Cyrine Farhat, Lebanon

Living with diabetes has given me a new perspective. When I was diagnosed at 15, I had to suddenly take charge of my life and make important daily decisions to stay healthy and thrive. Diabetes took away a lot of the freedom that I felt I needed growing up. I could not do many of the things that my friends did. This gave me more drive later in life to expand and push the norms of what a woman with diabetes can and cannot do.

My father’s diabetes diagnosis was the trigger that pushed me into diabetes advocacy. I had always coped well with my type 1 diabetes, but felt that there was a great need for support groups and free access to information for people living with diabetes in my country. As the carer of someone living with the condition, I felt more tools were needed to empower people affected to take control of their diabetes in a positive away. On the day that my father was diagnosed, I came up with the idea for “Positive on Glucose”, which started as an Instagram page and has grown into an NGO.