Diabetes at School Program

Partnership objectives

  1. Raise awareness on type 1 diabetes and child obesity.
  2. Enhance type 1 diabetes early diagnosis and improve children diabetes management at school.
  3. Develop a habit of healthy nutrition among school-aged children.

The intense collaboration between the various actors involved in this project has been a key factor to its success. The intense collaboration between the various actors involved in this project has been a key factor to its success. Copyright Sanofi

What are the health needs and challenges?

There are around 15,000–20,000 diabetic children in Turkey, and 1700 new children are diagnosed each year. Diabetic children suffer a variety of problems in school, such as being kept off physical education and school trips. Yet, all diabetic juveniles deserve the same educational opportunities as their peers. A lot of this responsibility falls on the teachers. Educating teachers about diabetes is an essential step that will reduce the problems faced by diabetic children in school and improve their quality of life. In addition, teachers might help ensure an early diagnosis before the disease advances.

Description of partnership activities and how they address needs and challenges

In Turkey, as part of the National Diabetes Program, and in partnership with the Turkish Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Education and the Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes Association, Sanofi is organizing an ambitious project - Diabetes at School - to help manage type 1 diabetes at school and raise awareness among children and teachers of childhood obesity and healthy eating habits in Turkish schools. 

Between 2010-2016 the main milestones included:

  • Awareness raising in schools by displaying posters in 60,000 schools nationwide. In addition,  Pediatric endocrinology units sent  letters explaining diabetes care to teachers.
  • A one-day training conference attended by 300 people took place in Ankara. This conference allowed preparing school seminars such as the Nationwide Educations in Schools program and a Digital Education Platform, a website (www.okuldadiyabet.org) which was created to provide easy access to educational documents for the 60,000 schools in 81 municipalities.
  • “Teacher Makes Difference” award, 142 applications submitted and 8 teachers were awarded
  • The Ministry of Education revised the circular on Diabetic Children in 2013,  to extend its scope to school administrators, teachers, parents and school bus drivers and circulated to 60.000 schools
  • In 2014, a public spot allowed to create awareness in the general public on Type I diabetes and diabetes at school
  • The program was included in the National Diabetes Control Program
  • Recognition of Diabetic Schools by an acknowledgment certificate to the teachers and to schools who are influencer in diagnosing diabetic children 

The program has had a great contribution in terms of raising awareness and enhancing type 1 diabetes early diagnosis in school age children, reinforced by a permanent educational resource on diabetes and obesity created for teachers and students. Collaboration has also been reinforced, with a strong basis of cooperation and interaction being developed between the Ministry of National Education, the Ministry of Health and the “Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes Association”. 

The Diabetes at School in Turkey Program has been a great success and its scope has continuously increased both geographically and in terms of targets and it is one of the good example of collaboration between various actors. The Ministry of National Education, teachers and school officials, public have been made aware of the problems diabetic children face every day. 

Over 6 years, the program reached;

  • 60.000 schools
  • 7,5 million students,
  • 585.000 teachers
  • 580.000 parents


Creating Awareness of Diabetes at School

Public spot in Turkish

Partnership information

Company(ies) Sanofi

Partner(s) Pediatric Adolescent Association, Turkish Ministry of Education, Turkish Ministry of Health, Turkish Society of Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes

Type of Partner(s) Government, NGOs

Therapeutic Focus Non-Communicable Diseases, Women and Children's Health

Disease(s) Children's Health, Diabetes

Program Type(s) Health System Infrastructure - Training, Prevention Programs - Awareness & Outreach

Targeted Population(s) Children, Patients in needs of treatment, Teachers

Region(s) Europe & Central Asia

Number of Countries 1

Country(ies) Turkey

Start Date 2010

More information Diabetes at School Program

Anticipated completion date Ongoing