“There is a stronger support network for diabetes patients." - Dr Edita Blakaj-Shala

Dr Edita Blakaj-Shala is an endocrinology specialist, a member of the Endocrinologists Association of Kosova, and a Ph.D. candidate at the University "SS. Cyril and Methodius" in Skopje. For the past two years, she has also served as an Ambassador for the Global Diabetes Walk.

Dr Blakaj-Shala works tirelessly as an endocrinologist at Sheikh Zayed Regional Hospital in Vushtrri. She personally witnessed the impact of diabetes, which inspired her to join the Global Diabetes Walk to promote awareness and prevention.  

Her first experience organising a Walk was both challenging and rewarding. 

"We faced many logistical challenges, but the community support was immense. I learned the importance of detailed planning and clear communication," she said. Securing funding and sponsorships posed another significant challenge, but Dr Blakaj-Shala's persistence and dedication paid off. Her approach of highlighting the mutual benefits of supporting the cause to local businesses proved effective, ultimately gaining their trust and commitment. 

Since organising these Walks, Dr Blakaj-Shala has seen an increase in diabetes awareness and a greater commitment from the community to live healthier lives. "People are more informed about diabetes prevention and management, and there is a stronger support network for patients with diabetes," she added. 

Dr Blakaj-Shala's work as a Walk ambassador reflects her dedication to her patients and her community. Her efforts not only raise awareness about diabetes risk factors and how to self-manage through exercise and nutrition, but also inspire others to take action towards a healthier future. 

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