World IBD Day Notch Giveaway - Alison's Story

This World IBD Day we’re super excited to be teaming up with Notch to give 3x £50 vouchers away! 

To celebrate our Notch giveaway, we spoke with one of our lovely supporters Alison. Alison was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis in May 2018, although she had been experiencing symptoms for a number of years prior. Having been open and honest about her condition to her family, friends and colleagues, she wanted to raise awareness of these hidden conditions and raise money for Crohn's & Colitis UK. It was clear when she was talking to people that the massive effect this condition was having on her life wasn’t quite fully understood. 

Since then she has completed My WALK IT in 2022 and this January completed the Big Winter Workout. She purchased a Notch bracelet and charms to signify completing these fundraising challenges and to reward herself for her fantastic efforts. Read more of her story below and see if she can tempt you to enter our giveaway.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is not an easy thing to talk about with friends, family or colleagues. Let’s face it, who wants to share how many times a day one goes to the loo!! It is also very difficult for people to understand how it impacts your daily life. There are so many people suffering in silence.

I was surprised when I did start telling people about the condition and my challenges how much support and interest I received, but also in turn how little people understood about the daily challenges I faced. I decided at this point that I wanted to do everything I could to raise awareness of Crohn's and Colitis. In my eyes, the more awareness we raise, the less awkward people will feel about their condition, and the more we can educate people on what life living with Inflammatory Bowel Disease is really like. 

I saw the theme for World IBD Day 2024 is myth-busting, which was great to see as I've certainly faced a number of myths since being diagnosed! My most common are:

"But you look well?"

"Why can't you take the bus?"

"So you just have to watch what you eat?"

The worst one I've received was: 

"Can't you just take Imodium?" 

I hope taking part in fundraising events and raising awareness will mean that there will be less misunderstanding and we can help to create a more inclusive world for everyone living with Crohn's and Colitis.

In June 2022, I embarked on my first fundraising challenge – My WALK IT. I completed 10K in rural Perthshire, accompanied by my friend Annette, and raised £330. After this event, Crohn's & Colitis UK promoted a keepsake of the event - a Notch bracelet. If purchased, they would receive a share in donations.

I loved the design of the simple band and that there was one a charm unique to Crohn's and Colitis. You could add more “charms” to the band to celebrate achievements. I had put my all into the challenge and was proud to have raised what I did, so I wanted to celebrate this milestone and also give more to the charity, so I ordered my band and the Crohn's & Colitis UK charm along with the My WALK IT charm, which I had engraved with the date. The fact you can personalise the Notch and charms is even better. I was delighted with the bracelet and the charms which represented both my cause and my achievement.

This year, after a wee break from bombarding my friends with the way Colitis affects my every waking moment, I embarked on the Big Winter Workout. 31 minutes of exercise every day in January – how hard can it be? Actually, VERY!! Especially when it is hard some days to get out of bed and get to work. This was a much tougher challenge than My Walk It. We had a wonderful community Facebook page where we could all share our stories and support each other – what a group of warriors.

I hadn’t seen a Notch promoted on social media this time, but I researched it myself and was excited to find that indeed there was one for the Big Winter Workout. Having undertaken swimming, cycling, yoga, gym sessions with my local women's football team and drumming to keep my sponsors entertained I raised £544. My biologics had stopped working and I was on a bit of a downward spiral, but I made it to the end of the challenge and bought my Notch to add to my bracelet, again engraved with the date, so when I look at it I am reminded that I am indeed a warrior.

I now have six Notch charms! There are charms to celebrate achievements, events and things that mean something personal to you making everyone’s bracelet unique. The It Takes Guts is one of my favourite slogans and it really does take guts to live with IBD.

Want to enter our World IBD Day Notch giveaway?

Be in with the chance to win your £50 voucher to spend on Notch bracelets and charms!


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