How did you hear about Girls With Guts?

I first learned about GWG on Facebook and when I connected with Alicia and we chatted about our medical issues. I’ve been a member of the GWG FB group for years and through the group and another that I belong to, I became an active supporter and advocate for other women with IBD. Once I became more familiar with the specific goals and intentions of GWG, I knew that I wanted to volunteer and support the group.

Why did I decide to volunteer for Girls with Guts?

I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease 45 years ago and to say there was a dearth of information about IBD back then is an understatement. As I got older and experienced myriad flares/illness, and surgeries, as well as my permanent ostomy, yet knowing no one else who had lived with this disease, I knew that I wanted to connect with other women with IBD, both to share my years of experience and knowledge, as well as to learn from their experiences.

When you’re not volunteering what do you do with your free time?

When I am not volunteering with GWG I work as an adjunct professor for a small university in SE Pennsylvania Chairing and participating on doctoral dissertation committees. I am a member of the CCFA Patient Advisory Task Force as well as a mentor in their Power of Two advocacy support program. In addition to my IBD work, I started volunteering for an organization, Anne’s Place located in Danbury CT, whose goal is to support anyone, men or women, going through treatment/surgery for breast cancer. They provide access to  additional resources, including therapeutic activities, such as yoga, counseling, and acupuncture. Funny story, I met a member of their board at my nephews wife’s baby shower where she saw the baby sweater and hat  I knit for the baby and she asked if I would be willing to  knit a baby sweater for their silent auction fund raiser, noting that the woman who used to knit these for them had recently passed away…this was  eight years ago and I have been knitting for them ever since.

As a retired full-time educator, I continue to feel strongly about my responsibility to support and educate others who might be newly diagnosed or recently struggling with their Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

footer color trail