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Running for diabetes

Practitioners working with a diabetic screening programme run to fundraise for Diabetes UK

Practitioners and support staff take part in charity run for Diabetes UK

Practitioners and support staff involved in a local eye screening service in Wirral joined forces for a run to raise funds for Diabetes UK earlier this month. 

Led by consultant Vineeth Kumar, the Wirral Diabetic Eye Screening Programme has been in place for almost two decades and works in partnership with community optometrists in the area. The screening service has previously been commended for its success, quality and accessibility. 

The team of runners who took part in the Port Sunlight 5k or 10k races on 18 June included optometrists Fred Howard, David McGowan, Dylan Barton and Oliver Gatehouse. They were joined by Mr Kumar, as well as programme manager Pam Niccolls, practice manager Jess Glasson, and eye clinic nurses. 

While programme staff and community optometrists in the area regularly come together to raise funds for charity, with cycle rides and skydives completed previously, it is the first time that they have fundraised for Diabetes UK. 

Reflecting on the fundraising initiative, Mr Howard, lead optometrist for the Wirral Diabetes Eye Screening Service, told OT: “Runners range from 10 years old to myself at 63. There were a mixture of running levels, but everyone really enjoyed themselves. It was a hot day, but all of the runners completed their races in good times.”

Mr Howard added: “The run was suggested by a patient and it really did bring staff and service users together for a joint cause. We can’t wait to do it again.” 

The team are so pleased with their efforts, Mr Howard confirmed that they would look to complete another fundraising race before the end of the year. 

To date, the team have raised more than £1200, but hope to reach £3000. 

To support the programme, visit its JustGiving fundraising page