Orange County Support Groups Open House
Burbank Support Group Facilitator's Essay Posted on CNN
A Team Challenge Participant's Inspiring Story
As Team Challenge gears up for its triathlon season, ulcerative colitis patient, Grant Henry, gets ready for a challenge of his own. Henry aspires to participate in the IRONMAN World Championship with the greatest endurance athletes of all time to raise awareness and funds for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). Henry entered the world-famous Kona Inspired, a contest that allows individuals to share their stories for a chance to participate in the World Championship.
Henry, a 29-year-old Los Angeles resident, has been battling the digestive disease for over six years. He has endured pain, multiple colonoscopies and extended hospitalizations. After joining Team Challenge and completing the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon, he came back as the Greater LA honoree, continuing his support for the program. Henry made it his mission to raise awareness for those that endure the same pain.
“It started when I was 23—I was the epitome of health. Then, in an instant, my life completely changed,” says Henry. “I bled a lot and had uncontrollable diarrhea. I have made it my mission to never let my illness stand in my way. I may not be one of the first people to cross the finish line, but when I do, that sense of accomplishment makes me realize that anything is possible.”
Henry created a 90 second video titled “From the Bathroom to Kona” sharing his story with the world. He hopes to participate in the IRONMAN World Championship in Kona on October 12 on behalf of those suffering with IBD. To view and vote for his video, click here!
“I have achieved things that I would have never attempted if it were not for ulcerative colitis. Things that I used to say, ‘I can’t’ to are now replaced with ‘I can and I will!” says Henry. “I want to encourage others to push themselves, so I am continuing my adventure with Team Challenge to spread awareness.”
On September 22, Team Challenge will be participating in the TriRock San Diego Triathlon, raising funds and awareness. For more information on the Greater LA/OC team, please visit http://ccteamchallenge.force.com/.
Join us this season to make a difference, to get in shape, to support a loved one who suffers from Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis, to make new friends, to lose weight, or even just to have fun! The possibilities are endless!
For more information on the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America or Team Challenge, please contact Jessica Dean at 310-694-3343 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Orange County Support Groups Seeking New Members!
PARENT NETWORK GROUP is facilitated by volunteers, Pamela George and Matt Bays. This group is a great way for parents of children with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis to learn more about IBD from world-class healthcare professionals, build bonds with area families, and enjoy group activities together. This group meets quarterly in Newport Beach near Fashion Island, and will have a team at the Take Steps walk in Irvine for any interested families.
SOUTH ORANGE COUNTY GROUP is facilitated by Sheila Rowan and Phil Hering. This group hosts speakers, shares the latest information and offers a supportive environment monthly. Meetings take place at Saddleback Memorial Medical Center in Laguna Hills.
NORTH ORANGE COUNTY GROUP is facilitated by Allison Miller and Darrin Pagenkopp. This group starts out with an icebreaker, hosts speakers, shares support and covers a monthly topic. Meetings take place at Los Alamitos Medical Center. This group also has a voluntary opportunity to join their team, Poo Crew, for the Take Steps walk in June.