The Importance of Communities for People Touched By Diabetes

The Importance of Communities for People Touched By Diabetes from Tu Diabetes on Vimeo. Earlier in 2008 we saw how new online communities such as and made their appearance. Also we saw how more established spaces like continued to grow and expand into broader health territory. More recently, we learned about the upcoming community venture Amy Tenderich is embarking on.

With all these events and keeping in mind comments posted by the likes of Scott Strumello and David Edelman, I have been giving careful thought to what this all means for TuDiabetes and the diabetic community at large. These are my conclusions:

1) As long as the driver behind the communities is a passion for helping people with diabetes connect with others living with this condition, help raise awareness about diabetes and allow diabetics to live a healthier life, I feel this is a great thing.

2) I believe in people like David and Elizabeth, Amy and Jens, among others (all of whom are also members of I believe they are passionate and driven from within. Otherwise, they wouldn't be doing what they do because we all know running communities or large blogs is no easy task.

3) The corollary of (1) and (2) is that what's happening is a great thing. The driver behind all these initiatives is (and should continue to be) offering people with diabetes the option to do things they couldn't do before, to enhance their lives. Therefore we applaud these efforts and link to every one of them in at least one way.

4) Like Scott put it in an exchange we had over email, the new mantra is working together, because joining forces, with our hearts in the right place, we can win over more attention towards diabetes and bring on board to any of our communities more people with diabetes so they may no longer feel alone. That is my biggest goal and, as long as it is accomplished somehow, I don't care if it's not through

Our first step in this direction was to partner with Gina and Jon from DiabetesTalkFest, who are now THE chat we recommend for members of and all others beyond our community.

We hope 2008 continues to be a year of partnerships and joint efforts with the goals of growing the diabetes community at large (bringing more diabetics out of the diabetes closet), raising awareness about diabetes even more and helping many more people with diabetes lead a healthier life.

Views: 13

Tags: communities, networks, social

Comment by Amy Tenderich on March 24, 2008 at 8:03am
Great work, Manny. Thank you!
Comment by Keri on March 24, 2008 at 11:14am
Manny, how truly inspiring you are! Keri
Comment by Jens from on March 24, 2008 at 11:22am
Hi Manny, as always, you have nailed what it is all about, and I applaud single thing you have done and created so far. is indeed a great place!
Comment by Lloyd on March 24, 2008 at 11:34am
There are quite a number of us who might consider one diabetes site their "home", but visit quite a number of the sites. Each has its particular flavor, but wherever I go I find old friends and make new ones.
Comment by Karen on March 24, 2008 at 11:51am
Thanks Manny, for knowing what this is all about and bringing us all together to help one another. Until i was diagnosed 2 months ago all i knew about diabetes was the type 2 my sister was diagnosed with. Now with both of us having different types, me - type 1, and her type 2 we have learned so much more about diabetes and having this group to listen to and question has brought us both answers we needed. i have made friends here and enjoy this web site immensely, being able to talk to different people lets the communication continue onward and lets us all know we are not alone with our hopes, fears, and questions. Thank you,
Comment by David and Elizabeth Edelman on March 24, 2008 at 12:00pm
Manny, I agree 100% with everything you said. I truly believe that our work improves and in some cases even saves lives. I'm very excited to see how all of these projects evolve.
Comment by saundra barragan on March 24, 2008 at 12:08pm
Thank you Manny. Just like lloyd just said it is very nice to be able to visit other sites and meet new people. But it also very comforting to be able to look at a particular site and really feel like it is your "home" site. That is how Tu diabetes feels to me. You always give us the encouragement we need to stretch our wings and try new things and meet new people. And I deeply appreciate all the effort you keep on putting into getting the very best possible for us. Thank you for all that you do and all that you give. It is enormous.
Comment by PowerPumper on March 24, 2008 at 12:14pm
1) As long as the driver behind the communities is a passion for helping people with diabetes connect with others living with this condition, help raise awareness about diabetes and allow diabetics to live a healthier life, I feel this is a great thing.

The basic need! Any site or any person restricting the exchange of information to help another in this multi-site community is in my opinion hurting other diabetics and do not deserve to enjoy the PRIVILEDGE of serving others. Though I remain with such sites -- this protectionist attitude is prevalent -- I only do so as long as I can help others and get help for myself.

My personal thanks to both you and Gina for forging ahead in a positive, collaberative effort. I joined her board because of her positive outlook, and I joined yours for the same reason.

In my opinion there is more than enough room for multiple communities. You can only get so big before one starts to feel lost and overwhelmed. Hopefully the "my way or the highway" board owners will follow suit and fostor a positive environment for everyone. The Lord knows we deal with more than enough crap already in our lives!
Comment by Linda G on March 24, 2008 at 12:22pm
Thank you Manny, for your compassion and very apparent. As Lloyd commented, tudiabetes is "home" to many of us...and you needn't really ask why. Also, as a facilitator to a suuport group for people with diabetes in my community, I can appreciate well what it entails; but being able to communicate with people "on the same page" the world over...well, need I say more!
Comment by Linda on March 24, 2008 at 12:32pm
Thank You Manny!
It is obvious to me that you have a passion to help others with D.
I find your site very helpful and there are a lot of wonderful people here.
I think the more knowledge that we gain in living with our D, the better quality of life we will have!
With much thanks to you!


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Diabetes Hands Foundation Team


Melissa Lee
(Interim Executive Director, Editor, has type 1)

Manny Hernandez
(Co-Founder, has LADA)

Emily Coles (Head of Communities, has type 1)

Mila Ferrer
(EsTuDiabetes Community Manager, mother of a child with type 1)

Mike Lawson
(Head of Experience, has type 1)

Corinna Cornejo
(Director of Operations and Development, has type 2)

Desiree Johnson  (Administrative and Programs Assistant, has type 1)


Lead Administrator

Brian (bsc) (has type 2)


Lorraine (mother of type 1)
Marie B (has type 1)

DanP (has Type 1)

Gary (has type 2)

David (has type 2)


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