National Crohn's and Colitis Awareness Month 2014

May 2014

Australia

This Event Begins In 8 Days Time

Crohn's and colitis awareness month aims to raise awareness about this condition. This is also a major fundraising event for Crohn's & Colitis Australia, a supporting organization which helps people with Crohn's and colitis. 100% of money raised goes towards supporting people with this condition and for further research for a cure.

Often referred as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), Crohn's and colitis are conditions which affect the intestines. These conditions cause the intestines to become red and inflamed. Crohn's disease can affect any area of the intestines whilst colitis (formerly known as ulcerative colitis) affects the large intestine (colon).

As with many other conditions, symptoms of IBD can vary between individuals. Symptoms of Crohn's and colitis can include:

National Crohn's and Colitis Awareness Month Details

Coverage Australia
Month May
Duration 1 Month
Date May 2014
Days To Event 8 Days
Organization Crohn's & Colitis Australia
How Is Date Set?  Fixed: Same Month Each Year
Comment  
Event Page/Website
  • fatigue and tiredness
  • frequent diarrhea & bowel movement
  • abdominal cramps and pain
  • anemia
  • loss of appetite
  • weight loss

Whilst the cause of IBD is not known, environmental, genetic and immunological factors may be involved. It's also thought that the symptoms of IBD may be triggered by environmental factors such as bacteria and viruses. There is no cure for IBD although it can be managed with medication. People with IBD often experience long periods of remission with flare ups from time to time.

Crohn's and Colitis Awareness Month promotes greater understanding of IBD. The major supporting organization, Crohn's & Colitis Australia, have in recent years used the 'Can't Wait' theme to carry their message.

"If You Can't Wait, Don't wait... See Your Doctor With Any Bowel Related Symptoms".

The theme 'Can't Wait' was chosen as it works on many levels. On a basic level, 'Can't Wait' reflects the urgency IBD sufferers experience when they need to go to the toilet at short notice.

On a deeper level, the theme reflects we can no longer wait for:

  • improved access to specialized care and treatment.
  • employers and schools to recognize IBD as a condition in its own right, and to help those with this condition manage it.
  • the long time between initial and final consultation.
  • an accurate diagnosis of IBD.
  • the government to prioritize IBD in their health programs.
  • the public to more become more aware about IBD.
  • the stigma and feeling of embarrassment towards this condition to be reduced.

There is also a 'Can't Wait' program with a dedicated website. Business owners are encouraged to participate in a special access toilet sharing program for IBD sufferers. They display a 'Can't Wait' sticker in a prominent place (such as a shop window). People with IBD apply for a Can't Wait Card and can use this to gain access to these toilets.

To raise awareness about Crohn's & colitis (and IBD), many events are held during May. There is an advertising campaign which uses the medium of print, radio and television to educate the public about what it is like to live with inflammatory bowel disorder.

Social media such as Facebook and Twitter is also used to raise awareness. Other activities and events have included a Parliamentary Cocktail Function and a CCA Fundraising Lunch in Sydney.

Crohn's & Colitis Awareness Month is also a time to raise money for the supporting organization, Crohn's & Colitis Australia. Crohn's & Colitis Australia provide many resources for people who wish to get involved in fundraising activities.

Donations help support people with this condition and provides funding for research into a cure. For more information visit Crohn's & Colitis Awareness month webpage.