In previous posts, I have discussed how I am a nurse and in graduate school. I may have even mentioned that I have an interest in type 2 diabetes, particularly among youth. Well, I am pleased to say that I am in the process of becoming a Lifestyle Coach so that I can implement a youth diabetes prevention program in my city.
As I have embarked on this journey, I have discovered that there are not a lot of resources for youth at risk for or who have type 2 diabetes. I have always wanted to work in preventative medicine because I believe if we can make positive changes in lifestyle while young, those habits are more likely to follow through adulthood. Type 2 diabetes is a preventable disease. Just because someone has a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, that does not mean that they will.
Another fascinating fact that I discovered is that there is not a Center’s for Disease Control (CDC) recognized Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) in mid-Missouri. This is interesting to me because there are a lot of rural areas in mid-Missouri and a lot of patients with and at risk for diabetes.
Due to the lack of prevention programs available in my area, I am working to becoming certified to implement a prevention program. I am unsure if I am going to partner with a church-based program that is currently being offered through my county health department. Or if I will take steps to start a non-profit organization. I am waiting to hear back from the CDC to find out if I could run the DPP as an independent organization or if I have to partner with business. I also am having to decide if I want to focus solely on adults at this time since the program through the CDC is for those 18 and older. Or if I will partner with another organization to start a program and form my non-profit organization that targets high-risk youth. So many decisions to be made. While researching how to start a non-profit, I have come to realize it is a lot of work! I do not know anything about writing a business plan! I’m just a nurse!
At the end of the day, I never envisioned myself starting a non-profit organization, being in a leadership role, or teaching in group settings. However, my desire to make a difference has led me in this direction. The learning curve is steep, and I am having to network, which is something that makes me uncomfortable. There will likely be bumps along the way in addition to some disappointment, but I am in this for the long haul. The sleepless nights, tears, and frustration will be worth it if I can make a difference in someone else’s life.
Wish me luck!