Local Service User
British born Tony Kelly returned from Jamaica in 1979 and lives in Birmingham with his wife of 38 years. As a graduate of Mico Teachers College he taught English Language/Literature and Religious Education in high schools in Kingston. Tony worked for Birmingham Social Services and West Midlands Probation Service before early retirement as a Senior Probation Officer specialising in equality & diversity. Among his qualifications is a Masters degree in Socio-Legal Studies from the University of Birmingham.
For seven years Tony has been a Diabetes UK Community Champion Volunteer devoting his time educating ethnically diverse communities in the West Midlands and further afield about health and well-being on diabetes, a medical condition which runs in his family. He sits on NHS Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group as a Patient Leader and has done numerous videos for other CCGs because of his positive message about diabetes. He is proud of the fact that he has controlled his type 2 diabetes with physical activity, including Pilates, yoga, zumba and aqua-aerobics every week and a healthy well-balanced diet since being diagnosed 14 years ago, which means he has never taken medication.
Tony was headhunted by the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Trust to hold diabetes workshops in Commonwealth countries where type 2 diabetes is rampant and was in Dominica last summer on one of those missions, with others to follow. He is going to Canada in May to do likewise. He was interviewed in June 2018 on BBC 2 TV NHS Live from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital commemorating the 70th anniversary of the National Health Service. He has won multiple community awards for his work on diabetes.
Tony and his wife are immensely proud of their daughter Abigail, an opera singer who performs all over the world.