Stephanie Bongard took to social media to post a photograph of her belly in support of the #GetYourBellyOut campaign. A post which has since reached thousands of people and even featured on the Huffington post website.
Since then our friends over at Pelican Health have offered Stephanie the chance to share her story over on their website.
‘I had seen it as a hashtag on Instagram and was inspired by the ostomates who were brave enough to bare their bellies to the world. Even more encouraging was that many of them looked to be my age!’ she writes.
We caught up with Stephanie to ask what it’s been like having so many opportunities since posting her first ever #GetYourBellyOut photo.
‘I never thought that the photo would go so far! I’m amazed at the opportunities I am getting to help bring awareness to IBD and living with an ostomy. Even though I’ve had to miss out on some important things in my life because of my medical history, this just goes to show that when one door closes another one opens.’
She continued ‘I hope that by sharing my story I can encourage other ostomates to do the same! Be proud and #GetYourBellyOut!’
In addition to Stephanie’s success following her initial belly photo another of our gorgeous campaign supporters Jane Beaumont landed a feature in a recent edition of Take a Break magazine after she was encouraged to share her IBD story over on our public #GetYourBellyOut Facebook page.
Jane’s advice to those thinking about sharing their story with others was ‘Never let your disease define you as a person and you’ll achieve what ever you please in life!’
It’s great to see that #GetYourBellyOut is helping people around the world adjust to life with Inflammatory Bowel Disease and that we’re able to connect patients with such diverse opportunities. From offering product feedback, newspaper/ magazine features, ostomy factory visits to featuring in a charity calendar, it’s been wonderful to see everyone’s confidence skyrocket.
Well done Stephanie, Jane and all who have shared their ‘belly pictures’ with us. Thank you for helping to raise awareness for all of us living with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) or an ostomy. What are you waiting for? #GetYourBellyOut!!!