2018 was the first full year of programming for the Gut It Out Foundation and we could not be more proud of the way our community came together to support all of our initiatives.
Our work is grounded in our online community that started four years ago with a Gut It Out t-shirt campaign to raise money for the Crohn’s & Colitis community. We would have never guessed the impact that sharing my mantra and tattoo "Gut It Out" would have just a few years later.
We strive to stay true to our humble beginnings that started when I was playing in Philadelphia and grew into an online community. Through our online platforms we continue to tell real stories of IBD patients, we continue to ask questions and educate one another, and we continue to bring the community together to inspire and encourage one another.
Our efforts in 2018 stretched across the country, partnering with new organizations and strengthening relationships with existing partners. Our impact this year is just a catalyst for years to come and we look forward to growing our community and hopefully, one day, celebrating a cure for IBD.
Traveling Support Group
In 2018, our Traveling Support Group reached six new cities where we partnered with 8 different organizations.
1. Cleveland, Ohio - Partnered with Crohn's & Colitis Foundation Northeast Ohio Chapter
2. Chicago, Illinois - Partnered with Rush Children's Hospital
3. Houston, Texas - Partnered with Crohn's & Colitis Foundation South Texas Chapter
4. Phoenix, Arizona - Partnered with Crohn's & Colitis Foundation Southwest Chapter
5. Kansas City, Missouri - Partnered with Crohn's & Colitis Foundation Mid-America Chapter
6. Baltimore, Maryland - Partnered with Baltimore families who participated in our Pledgeit Campaign
Although we crossed Dallas, Texas off our list in 2017, we partnered with two Dallas organizations in 2018: Crohn's & Colitis Foundation North Texas Chapter and Dallas Children's Hospital.
In 2018, we focused on identifying and supporting pediatric IBD organizations or institutions. Recipients of our 2018 grants include:
1. Children's Medical Center in Dallas
2. CCFA Nebraska for its Pediatric IBD Research initiative
3. Children's Omaha
4. TBD - We're gifting one more children's hospital on 12/31! You can place your vote here!
1. Orangetheory Fitness
We partnered with North Texas Orangetheory Fitness studios' OrangeLove program, which raised money for our Foundation with every Facebook check-in at a North Texas studio during the month of May. For more information on Orangetheory Fitness, visit www.orangetheoryfitness.com/
We partnered with Giftgowns to offer a Gut It Out hospital gown. Hospital stays can be one of the toughest times to "Gut It Out" and we wanted to offer a reminder to be optimistic through a fun and comfortable gown. You can purchase yours here.
Giftgowns offer a range of colorful and stylish hospital gowns for women, men and kids. They come in comfy cotton or flannel and have back closures that utilize snap buttons. The gowns include helpful features like snaps on the shoulder — which are practical for new for patients with IV tubes. They also have pockets which come in handy to stash your phone or other small items.
3. Gamers Outreach
We partnered with Gamers Outreach, a charity organization that provides equipment, technology, and software to help kids cope with treatment inside hospitals. Through our partnership, we are able to provide children's hospitals with Gut It Out GO Karts. GO Karts are portable, medical-grade video game kiosks that enable hospital staff to easily provide bedside recreation to children who are unable to leave their rooms or infusion chairs in hospitals. For more information, visit gamersoutreach.org.