Crohn’s and Colitis Fundraising and Awareness events are hosted by chapters and affiliates across the United Sates and Canada.

Check for events taking place across the U.S. and for all events in Canada and join in to help find a cure.

Gutsy Walk 2014

Local Family Shows Their Guts

Fundraising to bring attention to Canada’s disease.

On Sunday June 8th, 2014, nearly 15,000 Canadians will walk united towards a future without Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. In its 19th year, the GUTSY WALK, Crohn’s and Colitis Canada’s largest single-day fundraiser will hope to raise more than $3 million to help advance medical research. And local Calgary family, the Goodman’s, understand firsthand the importance of raising these much needed funds.

By the age of 14, Austen Goodman was already a competitive equestrian. His parents Gordon and Heather were well aware of how determined he was on succeeding, so they chalked up his recurring diarrhea as competition anxiety. But when the family doctor noticed that Austen had stopped growing, and his trademark exuberance was replaced by low energy, they knew it was more serious.

When Austen was diagnosed with severe Crohn’s disease in 2010, the family began their remarkable journey together, fuelled by an empowering need to help others living with this chronic disease. In 2012 Heather, Gordon, Austen and his younger brother Tate pooled their talents and developed a fundraiser that saw Gordon, Austen’s father, cycle alone from Victoria, BC to Tijuana, Mexico raising $40,000 in just 25 days for Crohn’s and colitis research.

TA&T Gutsy Walkhis year, the Goodman brothers, Austen (18) and Tate (17) continue to show their sense of community pride as Calgary’s 2014 Gutsy Walk Honorary Chairs. “Our dream is to find a cure for Crohn’s disease”, says Tate. “Seeing my brother, Austen, adjust to his situation was a real eye opener and galvanized our whole family to help find a cure.”

Austen and Tate hope to inspire others to walk and fundraise for Crohn’s and colitis research on Sunday June 8th, saying “There are many others who (left to right: Austen Goodman & Tate Goodman) either have this disease or who will be diagnosed in the future, so we hope everyone will fundraise for a cure so that others can lead a life free of Crohn’s and colitis.”

Canadians have more reasons to be concerned about Crohn’s and colitis than anyone else in the world. Families new to Canada are developing Crohn’s and colitis for the first time – often within the first generation. Most alarmingly, the number of new cases of Crohn’s disease in Canadian children has almost doubled since 1995. Researchers believe environmental factors tied to a “Western” lifestyle have sparked the increase. Food additives,local pollutants, overuse of antibiotics, and fanatical hygiene have all been implicated, but as of today the causes of Crohn’s and colitis – and a cure for these diseases – remain elusive.

Crohn’s and colitis are lifelong diseases that result in pain, urgent bathroom visits, hospital stays, and multiple surgeries. It affects academic success, careers,and relationships. “What began in 1994 with just a handful of locations has grown into a national event with 59 walk sites in communities across Canada,” says Har Grover, Chair of Crohn’s and Colitis Canada. “1 in every 150 Canadians suffer from Crohn’s and colitis, a rate that ranks in the highest worldwide. These are the “Canadian diseases”. The GUTSY WALK is an opportunity for us to walk together, showing those we care about that they are not alone.”

Pinebrook Austen Pinebrook Crohns 2013Golf Tournament
Crohn’s and Colitis Canada Annual Fundraiser

Hello Heather and Gordon,

I just wanted to let you both know what an absolutely fantastic job Austen did this past Monday at the Annual M&M Golf Tournament.

Standing ovation and then calls from our National Board member that was in attendance….everyone was so impressed.  I did call and thank Austen that night,  and I know that our Team in AB are planning to give him a gift of appreciation.

Both your sons are such a blessing to so many within our community and we are so very appreciative of your family’s willingness to help us tell the story. Please remind Tate that once he is settled at UBC, I am more than willing to connect him with our research community and see about finding him so work in one of their labs if that would appeal to him. Have a great day.

Warmest regards,

Paul A. Evered
Executive Director Western Canada
Crohn’s and Colitis Canada

Thermal HITS (Horse Shows in the Sun)

It’s a fitting title for someone living in Calgary. Austen headed down to Thermal, California at the beginning of February and has been training and competing. This is the start of a long season for him and the Thermal courses tend to be technical so it’s a good way to begin the season.

The best part of training in Thermal is the extra vitamin D seems to help Austen’s Crohn’s. When he was first diagnosed, he started to take a vitamin D supplement but there is no replacement for Cali sun! His health has improved and he has had an impressive start to the season.

I am always amazed that he is so competitive after catching up in growth from a couple of years where Crohn’s kept him under nourished and also having such a young and inexperienced horse. He is home in a week, and looking forward to the break I think, as showing is hard work although his passion.

EOG Resources Canada Spin in Support of Great4Life

In early January, my training moved into high gear with hot yoga at Moksha Yoga® Calgary five days a week and spin class two times a week.

Spin class was initiated by my colleagues at EOG Resources Canada who have become like family supporting me at work and also supporting Great4Life and our family goal of finding a cure for Crohn’s. Twice a week we sweat it out on our bikes.

The other day while spinning I was thinking how great it would be for my spin partners to join my ride and to breathe in the rich, salt air as we fly down the coastal highway with surf splashing at our feet while winding through ancient cedars. Although I will be alone on this ride, my colleagues will be with me in spirit as they started this journey with me.

This spin class of Great4Life early adopters has made me realize how fortunate I am to have my health and support.  Tate and Austen’s initiative has really come to life through this class and I look forward to those burning legs and that feeling of accomplisment that comes with every class.

We spin thanks to the great support from The Western Canadian Place Fitness Centre, and our coaches Annie Hird and Chantelle McCreight.