DSA News – Summer 2021

DSA Cape Town News

Timeless Care Team

Timeless Care Team hosted their monthly Soft Spot session in November 2021 at the Jolly Carp. To create awareness on World Diabetes Day, and with the kind assistance of Diabetes SA, they distributed reading material and Sister Kopolo of the Grassy Park Clinic delivered an informative talk on the ‘silent killer.’

It was a session filled with various activities from dry-haircuts to painting nails and health services provided various testing, such as glucose testing, blood pressure and Pap smears.

The chatter and laughter was evidence of a wonderful time had by all. The knitting club members proudly handed over their amazing love projects of baby beanies, booties, blankets to be distributed to those in need.

In the background the sounds of memorable music played and here and there a few sang along and some showed a dance move or two.


Margot McCumisky, National Manager of DSA, went to DeafSA on 26th November to do a talk on diabetes. An interpreter was present and the group had many questions and showed a great interest in diabetes. Two of the attendees had Type 2 diabetes and found the information very helpful.

DSA Port Elizabeth News

Diabetes Awareness in Kamvelihle, Motherwell

On 4 November 2021, Pamela Molefe, Martin and Elizabeth Prinsloo were privileged to be invited to address a group of elderly residents in Kamvelihle. They meet regularly in a large container and were so keen to learn more about diabetes. Pamela, our Xhosa speaking nursing advisor, spoke to them and answered their many questions. She also tested everyone’s blood glucose.

Pamela explaing about diabetes, while Martin and Elizabeth listen.
A few of the people present.
Lely Zweni (standing) is the co-ordinator of this group.

Diabetes Wellness meeting in Newton Park

The last meeting for this year was held on 10 November 2021. Our guest speaker was Felicity Black, a registered dietitian, who helped us all to understand more about how our bodies react to insulin and what we eat and drink. A time for questions and lively discussion followed her presentation.

Some of the people present.
Festive decor in Caritas Hall.
Felicity Black, registered dietitian.

DSA Young Guns World Diabetes Day – Boerie Braai

On World Diabetes Day, the DSA Young Guns held an event at The Willows, Three Pools. This was well-attended by not only the Young Guns but also by family members and friends who could chat while the youngsters had fun.

The day started at 10am and ended at 5pm. One of the DSA Young Gun leaders, Darren Badenhuizen, braai’d one hundred boeries in the pool lapa area. The kids enjoyed boeries with low-cal juice and a protein bar which was sponsored by Future Life.

Diabetes South Africa’s National Chairman Martin Prinsloo and his wife Elizabeth, who is the chairman of the Port Elizabeth Branch arrived with their grandson; Joshua, and his dog, Jessica. Joshua performed a lovely obedience show with Jessica and everyone was impressed with the dogs good behaviour and stylish outfit.

Martin did the raffle draw with the help of five Young Guns. Thereafter the kids took a break from swimming and did a potato and spoon race. The Young Guns played their own version of dodge ball which was most enjoyed by young and old. There was an exciting game of Tug of war where the rope snapped. This did not stop the kids as they tied a knot and carried on with the war in good spirits.

Families from Port Elizabeth and surrounding areas such as Jeffery’s Bay and Grahamstown joined the event. The youngest DSA Young Guns member in attendance was 4-years-old Type 1 diabetic.

Prizes were donated in the form of vouchers by The Valley Craig and Wacky Water World. These prizes were awarded to the winners of the many games played on the day.

DSA Pretoria News

A tribute to Rentia Kinchenton

The song is ended (but the melody lingers on). – Irving Berlin.

The Diabetes South Africa Pretoria Support Group members fondly remember Rentia who passed away in March 2021, especially on 27 September as she celebrates her birthday in heaven. She loved the Lord, had a compassionate heart, was a wonderful person, a born helper and a very courageous woman.

Rentia was a dedicated member of the DSA Pretoria Support Group. She volunteered her services on an ongoing basis with a heart-warming smile.

She was famously known as the sandwich lady as she was the maker of many tasty chicken, egg and mayo sandwiches for the Pretoria Diabetes Support Group meetings. Rentia was a loyal member always helping where she could. May her beautiful soul rest in eternal peace.

New Benoni support group

At the request of Nursing Sister Ferosa and in line with DSA’s objectives to empower all those affected by diabetes through support, education and information, the DSA Pretoria Branch encouraged and supported the establishment of a new support group in Benoni on 16 October 2021.

The meetings of this support group will be held monthly to provide support and information to the Benoni community and the surrounding areas.

It’s encouraging to note that as a build-up to World Diabetes Day on 14 November, an initiative pioneered by Sister Ferosa resulted in a number of people joining a Diabetes Support Group at the Northmead Clinic in Benoni.

The group benefitted from the awareness campaign which highlighted risk factors associated with diabetes as well as the promotion of a healthy lifestyle.

The turnout at this event is evidence that people are keen to know and understand what diabetes is all about. The more people know, the easier it will be for them to make better-informed choices and decisions. Furthermore, they will be able to manage diabetes effectively.

The more new support groups created, the better it’s for DSA to reach a wider audience. This has the capacity to increase DSA’s membership and to curb the scourge of diabetes which has a negative impact on health, families and society at large.

Benoni Lakes Lions Club Diabetes Awareness and Screening Day

Benoni Lakes Lions Club held a Diabetes Awareness and Screening Day at Elate Eatery in November. It was a great success despite some rainy weather which forced them to pack up early.

They managed to screen 47 people over a four hour period and are happy that all readings except two were within normal range. We had two men that had readings of 7,4 and 18,1 respectively. The gentleman with the 18,1 reading has already been diagnosed with diabetes.

DSA contributed literature which made a huge difference to the success of the day. Benoni Lakes Lions Club really appreciat the guidance and materials which DSA National Office provided. They are planning more Diabetes Awareness and Screening days in 2022 with the support and assistance from DSA.

Wound Care Wellness Workshop

The Diabetes South Africa Pretoria Support Group hosted a Wellness Workshop on wound care on 16 October 2021. We are thankful to Nursing Sisters Backeberg and van Zijl for an informative and detailed presentation on wound care. This insightful session was followed by a live demonstration on a willing volunteer on what to do when testing your feet at home. 

For a person living with diabetes, the reality is that short-term and long-term complications of the feet are potentially life-threatening. The diabetic foot in South Africa, as in all parts of the world is associated with a high risk of amputation. The daily individual foot checks and annual foot assessment by a professional are important consultations to mitigate against possible complications.

DSA Kwa-Zulu Natal News

Ulundi Diabetes and Hypertension Fighters

Ulundi Diabetes and Hypertension Fighters along with DSA planned a community outreach service to educate and do testing for free to disadvantaged people. Ulundi Diabetes and Hypertension Fighters works together with a multi-disciplinary team in conducting community services. They promote diabetes and hypertension awareness in different communities around Northern KZN.

We started this Diabetes and Hypertension Wellness Drives mid-year 2021. Our first drive was at Ulundi on 28th May. The day was all about educating the community about the signs, symptoms, treatment and management of hypertension and diabetes.

We also did screenings for all the attendees according to our specialisations and we have referred some of them for further investigations to their nearest doctors and clinics. We had the following practitioners on that day: biokineticist, dietitian, diabetes educator, optometrist, clinical nurse, coastal nephrology clinic, physiotherapist, and podiatrist.


On 18th June, we went to Nongoma to promote and install the same vision and goal of managing diabetes and hypertension. The community was so welcoming and they were eager to listen to the information we had to share with them. We managed to see 50% of patients of which was really good, hence it was the first thing to be done in the community.


On 29th June, we visited Hlabisa community to promote diabetes and hypertension awareness with an aim of educating the community and getting access to the health care resources they need to manage these conditions.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we did not do the presentations but we were able to do one-on-one patient education. Based on the information we received, we discovered that they need more of education mainly about medication, management and the importance of testing. We also referred a few for further investigations to their nearest doctors and clinics since we all stay far from their community. We planning to re-visit them again next year and we are hoping for better results.


On 5th July, we visited Melmoth with the same drive and vision of spreading the word of diabetes and hypertension management and treatment. Patients did come but there were few and most of them were rushing to work, we assume they also did not get the information plus we also had tight COVID -19 restrictions. We did all the testing and the patient education through one on one.


On 18th September, we visited Jozini (Sisizakele Special School), there was aerobics competition The Noah’s Ark presented by Intengu fitness centre.  We managed to conduct tests on few but most of them were focusing on the event. What we discovered with them is that yes they are into “fitness” but they lack guidance on proper exercise techniques and proper nutrition to avoid unnecessary complications.

Ulundi – WDD

On 14th November, we had a World Diabetes Day (100 years of insulin) in Ulundi. This was our end-year event. The purpose of the day was to mainly educate diabetic patients and the community of the disease and management. The plan is to make it an annual event.

On the day, we did testing (glucose, blood pressure, HbA1c and body composition), management exposure where they were oriented to different stations of different HCP. Participants had a Q&A session after the talk and prizes were given. All participants were given goodie bags for participating in the event.

We had a 30 minutes session of an exercise as part of the event. Exercise forms part of  diabetes management and treatment. It is highly recommended because it helps to lower HbA1c values by 0,7% (with medication and diet), lowers blood glucose, and boosts body sensitivity to insulin. It has been highlighted that people with diabetes who walked at least 2 hours/week were less likely to die of heart failure than sedentary individuals.