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#WearBlueforDiabetes & Know the 5

We all know the terrifying stats: Diabetes is the number one killer of women in South Africa, and the second leading cause of death in men. 1 in 2 people with diabetes is undiagnosed.

So what can we do?

South Africa needs a mass diabetes awareness drive. If we can lay the basic foundation this year, we can build on it in future years.

We want the whole of South Africa to wear blue on World Diabetes Day, Tuesday 14th November 2023. Why? So that every South African will know the 5 symptoms of diabetes.

Watch our #WearBlueforDiabetes Insta Lives

We were lucky enough to be joined by not one but two diabetes superstars to talk about #WearBlueforDiabetes & Know the 5. If you missed the Insta Lives, catch them here!

Insta Live with Holly Rey – watch here!

Insta Live with Dr Ziphozenkosi – watch here!

One consistent message: #WearBlueforDiabetes & Know the 5

All we want to do this year is spark interest in why people are wearing blue, and share the 5 symptoms of diabetes. 


That’s why we’ve created a series of social media shareables and printable posters – inviting people to take part, sharing the symptoms, and encouraging the whole of South Africa to wear blue for World Diabetes Day.

The 4 voices for this campaign – Helga Nefdt, Siyabonga Zuma, Bridget McNulty and Salih Hendricks – encompass 4 different lived experiences with diabetes. Type 1, Type 2, public private, young and old, male and female, with complications and without. We all have the same message.

Wear Blue & Know the 5

For the past two years, we’ve run very successful #WearBlueforDiabetes campaigns, focused predominantly on schools and businesses in the diabetes space. This year we’re going much bigger.

We’re inviting:

  • 20 schools in each province to take part: students in 180 schools to wear blue and learn the 5 symptoms of diabetes.
  • Over 70 companies – including big chains – to encourage their staff to wear blue and support diabetes in SA by knowing the 5 symptoms.
  • Every TV and radio presenter in the country to wear blue and explain that it’s so that all South Africans will know the 5 symptoms of diabetes.
  • Social media influencers in the health and diabetes space to join #WearBlueforDiabetes & Know the 5
  • Health departments in every province.
  • Public figures: Mayors, Premiers and even the President!

How to get involved

Share share share!

We want the whole of South Africa to #WearBlueforDiabetes & Know the 5!

Right-click or press down to save these for sharing. If you want to link for others to get involved, please include www.sweetlife.org.za/wear-blue-for-diabetes

Don’t forget! Use #WearBlueforDiabetes so that we can share your posts.

Get your school / company / organisation involved

Is your school / company / organisation wearing blue for diabetes? Please tell us so we can support them and share their posts!

Invite your school to take part in the 5 Symptoms Challenge

One school will win a colour printer and ink for a year! All you have to do is post a pic or video of learners sharing the 5 symptoms of diabetes, with the hashtag #WearBlueforDiabetes to enter! The most innovative entry wins.

Terms and conditions

  1. The competition closes on 15 November 2023
  2. Qualifying entries include any photograph or video posted on social media of learners sharing the 5 symptoms of diabetes using the hashtag #WearBlueforDiabetes.
  3. The winner will be selected from qualifying entries.
  4. The judge’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  5. The prize is not transferable.
  6. The winning school’s name will be published for publicity.

Join us for two Insta Lives

We are so excited to be hosting two Insta Lives to talk about #WearBlueforDiabetes & Know the 5 – one with singing superstar Holly Rey, who is living with Type 1 diabetes, and one with the wonderful Dr. Ziphozenkosi.

Please join us on @sweetlife.org.za on Instagram!

Thank you to our sponsors!

Diamond Sponsor

At Sanofi, our passion is to prevent, treat and cure illness and disease throughout life. We are driven to improve the health of communities and to find new solutions for patients by combining break-through science with advanced technology.

Gold Sponsors

At Abbott, we believe people with diabetes should have the freedom to enjoy vigorous, active lives. Our systems help people with diabetes manage their health more effectively and comfortably.

BD is a global medical technology company that is advancing the world of health by improving medical discovery, diagnostics and the delivery of care.

As a leader in the healthcare market, Clicks Group is committed to increasing access to affordable primary healthcare for all South Africans through its retail pharmacy and pharmaceutical wholesale businesses.

Medtronic is the global healthcare technology leader, with more than 95,000 people across 150 countries. We innovate solutions that treat more than 70 health conditions, from Parkinson’s to diabetes.

Silver Sponsors

Sweet Life is a registered NPO/PBO (220-984) with a single goal: to improve diabetes in South Africa. We are funded by sponsorships and donations from aligned companies and organisations who believe in our work. We only share information that we believe benefits our community. While some of this information is linked to specific brands, it is not an official endorsement of that brand. We believe in empowering people with diabetes to make the best decisions they can, to live a healthy, happy life with diabetes.