This month, Bruno will head to Romania with DiabPT United, the National futsal team of Portugal for people with diabetes, whom he has been associated with since early 2017, the team previously reaching 2nd place in the competition.
"The team was created in 2012 by the Youth Group of the Portuguese Diabetes Association (NJA) and the Association of the Youngsters with Diabetes of Portugal (AJDP) to raise diabetes awareness and to show diabetes is no barrier to sports and achieving your dreams." says Bruno, head coach.
"The team aims also to promote physical activity and help fight against discrimination that many people living with diabetes still suffer" he says.
This year, the team is co-lead by João Nabais, Jenifer Duarte (team manager), Bernardo Rodrigues and Ricardo Simões with logistical support from the Portuguese Diabetes Association (APDP), and coached by Bruno Fuzeiro with the help of the assistant coach Rui Simões, and has the support of a health care professional experienced in the area, nurse Manuel Esteves Cardoso.
"The ultimate challenge is to ensure that all players have an optimal glycaemia to allow them to be at the top of their physical capability! This is a hard task and only a few times fully achievable.” says Bruno.
"There can be difficulties in blood glucose management after matches but most of the times we manage well the situation. Usually, the players have meals with a good amount of carbohydrates and proteins to rebuilt the reserves and adjust their insulin doses accordingly.”
There are some proud moments amongst a team playing seemingly against the odds. "We receive messages from other diabetics saying the team has made a difference in their lives. We reached a vast audience through the media and raising awareness of diabetes is our finest achievement," says Bruno. The team was on National television a few weeks ago.
"We wish to develop project DiabPT United if possible for new sports and educational areas, we want this project to be a reference at national level and also to have an impact at European level. We seek to expand the project to include more people with diabetes from a wider coverage of the Portuguese territory."
"Diabetics shouldn't give up on their dreams. Don’t give up of playing the sport you enjoy. You will face difficulties, you will feel sometimes down, you might feel discriminated but this shouldn’t stop you. This should only make you stronger! Try to get together with other people living with diabetes, contact your local or national diabetes association, I am sure that they will be a huge help."
We wish Bruno and his team the best of success in Romania.
Visit the team's official Facebook page