Sam Cleasby

Sam was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis in 2003 and has since become a passionate advocate for disability rights, particularly 'invisible conditions'.

Sam's successful blog So Bad Ass is a fantastic platform to raise awareness of Inflammatory Bowel Disease and helps thousands of people online. As well as supporting a digital community, Sam is also an active member of the South Yorkshire Local Group

When I first got diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis, I had never heard of it before. The hospital gave me little information and I started searching the Internet to find out more. What I found were some scary stories that terrified me. I then found Crohn's and Colitis UK and the relief of finding honest, down to earth and reliable information and support made me feel so much better and I immediately joined as a member. 

After receiving so much from the charity, I decided that I'd like to give something back and wanted to get involved. 

My website So Bad Ass was thriving and being able to signpost my lovely readers to a place where I felt confident that they would get the wonderful information and support that I'd had, was such a bonus. 

Over the past 3 years I have worked so hard to raise awareness of IBD and to encourage others to seek help and to learn to accept their illness. I've shared my journey through surgeries and more and my aim has always been to help others.

I hope in my role as Champion that I can continue on this path and be a help to people with IBD and their friends and families.  

It's not easy having a chronic illness, especially one that has demanded several life changing surgeries. There have been times where it's felt too much, when I have been so low but the knowledge that I have helped others has always kept me going. I have to believe that my life is on this path for a reason, and that reason is to support all those who are following me in life with IBD.  

Diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis in 2003