By Rhonda Richards | In Charity
Micah Richards has lent his support to a Manchester-based diabetes group in an attempt to raise awareness about the disease.
The England international visited the Kath Locke Centre, based in Hulme, meeting staff and members of the Sugar Group.
Micah with members of the Sugar Group
The initiative is celebrating its 10th birthday this year and as such, the 20-year old donated a signed England shirt for a forthcoming raffle aimed at raising money to continue the activities they run.
Recent figures have shown that rates of diabetes have increased dramatically in the UK in recent years, with two million people known to be suffering from the condition.
As such, the Sugar Group meet weekly to discuss ways of tackling the problem and reducing the risk of diabetes, including participation in swimming sessions and talks by dieticians.
The Sugar Group was started in 1999 and targeted predominantly the African and Caribbean community in Manchester, though such has been its expansion that sessions are open to all.
As well as the physical activities offered, the centre gives emotional support to those suffering from diabetes to ensure they are aware of all the help available to them.
Sandra Stapleton, a coordinator from the Kathe Locke Community Resource Centre, said:
“We’re delighted that Micah, who is a local sporting hero, took the time to visit us and donate the shirt.
“It’s a real boost for the group which has become a lifeline for a lot of older people since its launch in 1999.
“Our members really benefit from the social and emotional support the group gives as diabetes can cause mobility problems and isolate older people.”
Another measure to help avoid diabetes is through exercise, something Micah has been involved in encouraging among young people through the Live 4 City scheme.
On his visit to the Sugar Group, Micah added:
“I was delighted to be invited down to the Kathe Locke centre, and I hope that I can help them continue the work they do.
“As a sportsman I’m in a privileged position to encourage people to exercise, and we all know somebody with diabetes so it’s good to raise awareness about the condition.”