We started Beta Change because we wanted to support diabetes advocates from around the globe by sharing their story and connecting them with mentors to fulfil their goals. We allowed ourselves to dream big to achieve our vision and mission. We were excited to be the change we felt was needed as people living with diabetes to create a better world for everyone.
We started by building our website, developing our social media channels, and brainstorming how we could establish our platform, reach and network. We said hello to the world in 2016 during DSMA’s World Diabetes Day 24-hour global tweetchat (#WDDchat16) by hosting a discussion on what defines a diabetes advocate.
We played around with different ways of generating thought provoking discussions and sharing stories. Our first live Virtual Roundtable discussion explored the topic of diabetes technology and privilege. Over time, these evolved into one-on-one livestream sessions called Minisodes. In addition to our audio/video content, we also created a library of Global Postcards where diabetes advocates from around the world share their stories through a short blog post with photos, and we worked with contributors to translate Global Postcards into multiple languages to better share them with their local community and have a true local and global impact.
When you put a bunch of ambitious adults together who are busy looking after their families while balancing diabetes, establishing their careers, and reaching their goals, life inevitably gets busy. Although we started a LinkedIn group to grow our network and work on our goal to connect diabetes advocates for mentorship, we had limited capacity to keep stoking that fire. Still, we pushed on with reaching out to the global diabetes community to keep sharing stories and we held our monthly meetings at all sorts of horrid hours (time zones…gotta love them!) to keep the Minisodes and Global Postcards going, along with our monthly newsletters.
Then a global pandemic struck us all. Any new advocacy avenues we wanted to explore quickly went further down the priority list as we leapt to navigate and manage the new normal that impacted each of us differently. Collectively, we have also started to feel burnt out when it comes to diabetes advocacy. During our most recent monthly meeting, our team came to the conclusion that we need to take a step back from the cadence of connection we have been building through our various channels at Beta Change; while we have so many great ideas that we want to pursue, we know that our mission needs to be sustainable. We are taking time to do what we need to do to fill our cups again and focus on our health and families.
We have already accomplished so much in 2021, and we are excited to share that news with all of you. While you may not hear from us as often as you are used to, we are not vanishing into the abyss. Our platform will still be here for you to share your stories with the diabetes community. And who knows? One day we might come charging back, reinvigorated to be the change.