Best practice cases

Tingbjerg Changing Diabetes

Tingbjerg Changing Diabetes is a long-term community intervention initiative to promote health and prevent type 2 diabetes among high risk population groups living in the socially deprived neighbourhood of Tingbjerg in Copenhagen, Denmark. It is a place-based approach that includes numerous coordinated interventions driven by multiple stakeholders across various everyday settings.

Tingbjerg Changing Diabetes

Outcomes

The interventions in Tingbjerg are primarily social and so are the outcomes. Some formerly isolated residents have engaged in social activities and have become socially included. The theory of change states that social outcomes eventually leads to health outcomes, but as of now health outcomes have not been measured.

Key lessons learned

● Working trustfully together is key for partnership formation. You get to know each other and build trust, and eventually these relationships turn into ‘partnerships’.

● Start with the low-hanging fruits. Focus on how you can support the community rather than how the community can support your project. Go into the community and explore their needs – and do not be afraid of getting your hands dirty.   

● Start with and among those who are interested and motivated and expand from there. Begin building a small ‘coalition of the willing’ by focusing on those who are eager to collaborate instead of those who are not.  

● Start where there is energy; others will join at a later stage.  

● Start in one setting and expand from there.  

Stakeholders

Steno Diabetes Centre, Brønshøj-Husum District Political Committee, Copenhagen Hospitality College, Copenhagen Municipality (departments of culture, day-care, health, employment, and social services), Gerlev Center for Play and Movement, Madkulturen (a self-governing food institution), the Social Housing Associations of FSB and KAB, Svanholm Gods (an organic production farm), University of Aalborg, University of Copenhagen and University of Southern Denmark.

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