Get Your Belly Out for Crohns and Colitis!

Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are both major categories of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBD). The European Federation of Crohn's & Ulcerative Colitis Associations (EFCCA), member of EPF, represents national patients’ organisations to tackle the disease at the EU level. While CEO Luisa Avedano believes prevention is not an appropriate way to tackle this particular condition, a young British model, Bethany Thownsend, made awareness the hobbyhorse of the Crohn's disease.  

EPF met Ms Avedano in June and she shared on our blog her concern that, despite extensive research, there is currently no known cause or cure for IBD. While prevention is one of the answers given at the EU level to tackle chronic diseases, particular diseases such as IBD that cannot be anticipated should be approached from other perspectives to ensure we are effectively tackling these pathologies. 

Link to her blog testimonial:

Inspirational IBD awareness-raising campaign

Bethany Townsend, 23, from the UK, became an Internet model when she sent her photo to the Crohn’s and Colitis UK Facebook page on 21 June posing with her colostomy bag. She hopes to inspire other people with Crohn's disease to feel comfortable in their skin and raise awareness of the condition. Since that moment, many other patients have come forward and shared selfies revealing their disease, as part of the #GetYourBellyOut and #myCCUKstory campaigns.

Interviewed on BBC, David Barker from Crohn’s and Colitis UK (CCUK), said “These are conditions that people do not want to talk about so it is important that we get greater awareness, greater understanding and greater profile for these conditions so the work that Bethany is doing is really helping us to do that” (Link to the full video on BBC).

For more information on Bethany’s photo and CCUK campaign, please visit: 

© Picture credits: EPF Weekly Coffee, Camille Bullot and Luisa Avedano (top); Facebook page of Bethany Thownsend (below).