An Inspiration Week – awards, meetings, activities

An Inspirational Woman

Clare O'Presco Gold Sligo

Margaret O’Presco was awarded a gold medal by her Diabetes team at Sligo University Hospital in recognition of her good health having lived with Type 1 Diabetes for 50 years. Her team includes from left: Majella Toomey, Dr Wilma Lournes, (Margaret herself) and Kelly Hennigan.

Margaret was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at 16 yrs and reflects…. ”You can live a pretty normal life with Type 1,  there are a set of rules and they can be a pain but if you live by them, you actually get more freedom”. Her top tips for young people who may be struggling are:

  • ‘try to understand the condition as much as you can’.
  • ‘Don’t be afraid, you can live along with the condition’
  • ‘Keep active, my dogs have kept me active over the years and I did lots of things like footing turf, cutting wood’!

Note: Diabetes Ireland run some great workshops and some great activity days for teens and young.

Our Care Centres In Dublin & Cork provide services that help to prevent health complication. These services are discounted to members.

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O'Shea presentation Killarney €10k +2The O’Shea family from Killorglin, Co. Kerry raised €10,752 on Christmas Day bravely swimming in the Atlantic ocean off Cromane Beach in memory of Denis, who tragically passed away last August at the young age of just 27.  One hundred locals joined them in the freezing ocean whilst equal numbers looked on. Thank you to the family and local Kerry people for donating  towards Type 1 Research and our Teen / Children’s activities.


On Tuesday, Grainne Flynn opened our Clare meeting with 66 people attending. We had a good mix of young and old and people with Pre-Diabetes, Type 1 Diabetes and type 2 Diabetes present. There was a great appetite for our educational literature and judging by the empty boxes left at the end of the night, people went home with lots of bedtime reading!

Fiona Treacy, Health Promotion Officer, from Diabetic Retina Screen, described how to check if you are registered for a retina screen and what happens at the appointment. For further information, free phone 1800 45 45 55 and visit website

Pauline Dunne presenting 2Pauline Dunne, Senior Dietitian with Diabetes Ireland presented on ‘Being Sugar Smart’. Pauline revisited what constitutes healthy eating, explained what ‘free sugars’ are and what foods and drinks tend to contain ‘free sugars’. Portion sizes and reading food labels were also discussed. Pauline also shared some tips for keeping good habits on track – planning meals, writing a shopping list and sticking to it, being mindful of the size of our plates and mugs.  There were lots of questions from the floor, e.g. what foods a person with diabetes should or shouldn’t eat, how safe are artificial sweeteners and how much ice-cream is okay? Over coffee break people asked questions on a 1:1 basis, topics ranging from alcohol intake, to carbohydrate counting.

Picture for Website2


Our team were out around Ireland again this week, running educational workshops with people who care for people with intellectual disbilities and have diabetes or are at risk of diabetes. 14 carers attended our workshop in Drumcar Co Louth and 15 in Ennis, with further meetings planned for Swords May 23rd and Baldoyle on May 25th


In Galway this week 58 people turned out for a Type 1 Diabetes public meeting despite glorious weather being a stiff competition.

Dr Derek O’ Keeffe, Specialist Registrar in Diabetes spoke about the artificial pancreas, a worldwide project looking at Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) and Insulin Pumps talking sensibly to each other in a closed loop system. This is a fantastic development for our community. He enthusiastically spoke about newer technologies like ‘IM2calories’, a programme that allows you to take a photograph of food to find out its carbohydrate value and ‘diet sensor’, a portable spectrometer which sends an infra-red beam through a food item and determines the likely composition. This has potential to be incorporated into a smart phone in time.  Technology is clearly our friend in the management of diabetes and we are embracing it.

Dr Esther O Sullivan, Consultant Physician spoke about emerging technologies in diabetes. She spoke about insulin pumps and who was most suitable for an insulin pump e.g. pre-pregnancy, people doing regular moderate to high intensity activity sport who are on Multiple Daily Injections and not achieving target HbA1C. Indications for use of CGM were also discussed e.g. severe hypo. Dr O Sullivan mentioned apps which people find useful namely ‘myfitnesspal’, ‘mysugar’ and ‘onedrop’.

Galway adventure trip

Rachel Langan, Senior diabetes Dietitian spoke about the basics of carbohydrate counting, looking at the use of food labels, weighing portions and using measuring cups routinely to ensure that portions are accurate.


A FREE Screening and Awareness morning in Bridgewater Shopping Centre, Arklow was organised by the Wicklow branch  Saturday 21st May from 10am – 1pm.


Jenny Dunbar was in Lismore this week kicking off our popular CODE education courses for type 2 Diabetes. There was a great response from those who attended and they will be attending the next 2 weeks for additional learning, setti ng their own lifestyle change goals and then coming back to Jenny in 6 months time for a review meeting.


CODE courses coming to these areas in the next few weeks

To see our upcoming Events visit