Lions Empowering School Nurses for Children with Diabetes is a partnership between the Delaware Lions Clubs District 22D, the Delaware Department of Education, and the Delaware Diabetes Coalition.  It provides three levels of diabetes training for all Delaware public and non-public schools and is paid for through a grant from the Lions Clubs International Foundation.  Training is open to all school nurses, staff, contractors, and parents of children living with diabetes.

“We’re so excited to partner with the Delaware Lions Clubs District 22D and the Delaware Department of Education on this breakthrough virtual educational opportunity for all Delaware school nurses, staff, and parents,” said Sara Bluhm, Delaware Diabetes Coalition Executive Director.  “To be able to provide such valuable learning content at no cost to the education system at a time when students are being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at a never-before seen rate, is a lifesaver for those educators who are with these children five days a week.”

The project arose when a Delaware school nurse, who has a son living with Type 1 diabetes, saw the need for readily available diabetes education for school nurses and staff in Delaware.  She approached the Delaware Diabetes Coalition and the Lions Club with Salus Education’s training program, “Diabetes Care at School: Bridging the Gap.”  Together, they partnered with the Delaware Department of Education and applied for a grant through the Lions Club International Foundation to fund every Delaware school’s access to the training for two years.

The Lions Clubs of Delaware are thrilled to partner with the Delaware Diabetes Coalition and the Delaware Department of Education to help bring this unique training program to the schools,” said John Monahan, Lions District 22-D Diabetes Chair.  “Since diabetes is identified as one of the five world causes of Lions Clubs International, local Lions Clubs and their members will support and promote this initiative and do what we can to improve the lives of those living with diabetes.”

Three levels of training are available, including a six hour CE-eligible training for school nurses and a 30 minute optional training for non-nursing staff.  For more information, Delaware school staff are encouraged to visit https://bit.ly/DDCLESNCD or email Nurse Facilitator, Aimee Hastings at aimee@dediabetescoalition.org.

Type 1 diabetes is an incurable, unpreventable disease where the body stops producing insulin. People living with Type 1 diabetes must monitor their blood glucose with finger sticks several times a day or wear a continuous glucose monitor. They must inject insulin into their bodies according to their blood glucose, eating and exercise.  Medical technology is evolving rapidly to assist in the management.  

There are more than 300 students living with type 1 diabetes in the Delaware School System as per the Delaware School Nurse Documentation System.  School nurses and staff play a large role in assisting in the management of these students living with diabetes; therefore, it is essential for school nurses and school staff to have access to appropriate and current diabetes education, so they are prepared for different methods of care and treatment for students in their care.

The Delaware Diabetes Coalition, Inc. (DDC) is a statewide nonprofit organization comprised of a network of healthcare organizations working together to improve the lives of all people in Delaware affected by diabetes through awareness, prevention, identification, dissemination of services and advocacy.

Lions Clubs International is the largest service club organization in the world. Our 1.42 million members in more than 48,000 clubs are serving in over 200 countries and geographic areas around the globe. Since 1917, Lions have strengthened local communities through hands-on service and humanitarian projects, and we are able to extend our service impact through the generous support of our Lions Clubs International Foundation. We are focused on supporting sight, hunger, the environment, childhood cancer and our new global cause, diabetes, to help address some of the biggest challenges facing humanity. Lions have set an ambitious goal of helping 200 million people per year so we can bring even more service to more people than ever before. For more information about Lions Clubs International, visit lionsclubs.org.

The Delaware Department of Education (DOE) is committed to ensuring the health and well-being of all students across the state. As part of this commitment, the School Health Services program works tirelessly to provide comprehensive health services, resources, and support to students, families, and educators in Delaware’s public and non-public schools. As we continue to adapt to the evolving landscape of education and healthcare, the Delaware DOE remains committed to promoting equity, inclusivity, and excellence in school health services. Together with our partners, we aim to empower students to lead healthy, fulfilling lives and achieve their fullest potential. For more information about the Delaware Department of Education’s School Health Services program, please click here.