Finding your fit – creating connections within the ostomy community

Come hear from our panelists of ostomy related associations and find a community to fit your needs. Panelists will describe their organization and how you can get connected for support, get involved in events, and find resources they offer.

Be inspired by others who can relate to your situation; Feel empowered in your ostomy journey to learn more about your condition; Help others by sharing with other communities; Stay connected to other resources which may fit your lifestyle; Gain confidence by discovering activities and events for people with similar conditions; Join social network groups to stay engaged and learn new tips!
  • United Ostomy Associations of America, Inc.
  • Youth Rally Camp
  • Crohn's & Colitis Foundation
  • Coloplast® Care: The connector that helps you transition from confusion after ostomy surgery to confidence.
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    Michael Gerald
    PhD, CMHC (Utah), CRC, LMHC (Iowa)
    I have had a colostomy since I was 18 months old. Shortly after I was born, I developed a lymphangioma in my left buttock, which eventually perforated my rectum. My first ostomy was a transverse colostomy, and I had two stomas. At age 12, I had my ostomy moved to a sigmoid colostomy, which is what I have to this day. Adjusting to my ostomy has been a gradual and continual process. I identify as a Person with a Disability (PWD).
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    Elizabeth Collins
    Coloplast® Care Advisor
    I have been an ostomy advisor and Coloplast employee for 11 years. Every day I help guide ostomates through their journey with intimate product and lifestyle needs through the Coloplast® Care program. I am passionate about enabling ostomates to live the lives they want to live. Listen to real stories of how my mission to be a robust resource is making lives easier.
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    Brenda Elsagher
    UOAA Director of Affiliated Support Group Affairs, ostomate, and author
    Brenda Elsagher has been involved with the ostomy community since 1995, when she was diagnosed with colorectal cancer. At the time, her children were three and five years old and she had been married only 6 years. Fortunately, Brenda was able to beat the cancer, and with a permanent colostomy (that she calls life saving), she went on to watch her children grow up, her husband turned gray, and now she is a grandmother. Brenda became a National speaker, author of five books, and a comedian. Brenda jokes once her rectum was removed she had more room for creativity! She has taken the volunteer appointed position on the United Ostomy Association of America Board as Director of Affiliated Support Group Affairs. She has been a leader in her own support group in Minneapolis since she entered the ostomy world. Brenda believes that having an ostomy is not only life-saving but life enhancing, and she'll talk more about that and the many great experiences she's had over the years including being the cheerleader for all the groups in the USA.
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    Catherine Soto
    Crohn's and Colitis Foundation Senior Director of Patient Education and Support
    Catherine Soto, MPA is Senior Director of Patient Education and Support for the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation, and has been working towards the organization's mission for 8 years. In her role, she oversees the development of educational resources and programs for adult and pediatric patients with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. She also oversees the Foundation's IBD Help Center, a resource and information center that provides education, guidance, and support for patients, caregivers, and anyone seeking help through multiple channels including phone, email, and live chat.
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    The material shared within this webinar is based on the personal experience and learnings of the presenters. Nothing within the webinar is intended to be used as medical advice and or used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

    This information is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to substitute for professional medical advice and should not be interpreted to contain treatment recommendations. You should rely on the healthcare professional who knows your individual history for personal medical advice and diagnosis.

    Call your healthcare provider if you have any medical concerns about managing your ostomy. You may also contact your Coloplast® Care Advisor for product usage and availability questions at 1-877-858-2656.