Diabetes Prevention, Education Program Receives Award for Teamwork from Colorado State University Cooperative Extension

A team of Colorado State University Cooperative Extension professionals were recognized with the Epsilon Sigma Phi team award on Thursday, Sept. 22, at a ceremony in Fort Collins. Epsilon Sigma Phi is the professional fraternity for Cooperative Extension, and the award was from the Colorado chapter. The team was recognized for Small Changes Make a Big Difference, an awareness program focused on diabetes education.

     Team members are Jane Frobose, Colorado State Cooperative Extension agent in Denver County; Sheila Gains, Cooperative Extension agent in Arapahoe County; Kay Zimka, Cooperative Extension agent in Jefferson County; and Jennifer Eich, Cooperative Extension agent in Adams County. Zimka and Eich recently left Cooperative Extension.

     The educational program focused on providing education to Colorado residents who are at risk of developing diabetes and sharing information about preventing and controlling the disease. In Colorado, more than 250,000 people have diabetes, and the disease has reached epidemic proportions nationwide. In addition, the average health-care cost for a person with diabetes is more than $13,000 per year, $10,000 more than a person without the disease.

     The Small Changes Make a Big Difference team developed a health education workshop for community groups to share information about diabetes prevention, preventing or delaying complications caused by diabetes and actions that are effective in taking control of personal health.

      Other collaborators include Pat Kendall, Shirley Perryman and Melissa Bardsley from Colorado State’s Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition; Dale Roggoff Greer, Gloria Vellinga, Barbara Larsen and Janelle Scrivner from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s Colorado Diabetes Prevention and Control Program; Marion J. Fanz, Nutrition Concepts by Franz, Inc.; and Salud Family Health Centers.