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League legend to lead Sneaker Friday fundraiser for diabetes

Written by Leanne Wilkins

League legend to lead Sneaker Friday fundraiser for diabetes

Thousands of Aucklanders are expected to descend on Manukau’s Due Drop Events Centre on Friday (17 Nov) to participate in Diabetes New Zealand’s inaugural en masse fitness-focused event as part of its national fundraising day, Sneaker Friday.

Hosted by rugby league legend Ruben Wiki, Diabetes New Zealand is inviting Aucklanders to lace up their sneakers and come along to the ‘Sneaker Friday: Move with Wikí’ free and fun event to help raise awareness and funds for the country’s biggest and fastest growing health crisis.

Wiki, who is ambassador for the Warriors Community Foundation, is no stranger to running workout sessions at his own gym in Ōtara. He says is excited to be part of an event that has such an important message behind it. Originally from South Auckland, Ruben is all too familiar with the significant impact diabetes has on his community. Te Whatu Ora Counties Manukau has the highest rates of diabetes in Aotearoa with more than seven percent of people in the region living with the condition.

“I’m pumped to be part of this event which first and foremost is about raising awareness for diabetes, and the important role staying active has in preventing type 2 diabetes, and managing it for those already diagnosed,” says Ruben.

“The Sneaker Friday event is all about making fitness and movement fun and accessible for all ages and abilities. We’ll make sure no one gets left behind; whether you participate for five minutes or the full hour, it’s all about getting moving and working towards a healthier lifestyle.”

Diabetes New Zealand chief executive officer Heather Verry says Sneaker Friday is a great way for Kiwis all over the country to get involved and show their support for the more than 300,000 New Zealanders living with diabetes.

“What we love about Sneaker Friday is that it’s very easy for all New Zealanders to get involved. Most people own a pair of sneakers, so it’s as simple as wearing them to work, school or at play on Friday the 17th to help shine the spotlight on diabetes.

“And if you want to go one step further, you can participate in a local eventhappening across the motu, or organise your own activity by rallying your work colleagues to go for a lunchtime walk or run,” says Heather.

Sneaker Friday is part of Diabetes Action Month, which is taking place nationwide this November.For more information on Sneaker Friday and Diabetes Action Month visit: www.diabetesactionmonth.co.nz.

To register for the ‘Sneaker Friday: Move with Wiki’ event at Due Drop Events Centre on Friday 17 November, register at eventfinda.co.nz/sneakerfriday.

Event details:

What: Sneaker Friday: Move with Wiki

When: Friday 17 November, 7am – 9am

Where: Due Drop Events Centre, Manukau

How: Free to attend, register at Eventfinda.co.nz

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