Over 1.8 million nonprofits and charities for donors, volunteers and funders

2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit

The Great Bowel Movement

Add to Favorites

Share this Nonprofit

Donate

Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, Health Support

Mission: The Great Bowel Movement is a social awareness movement with the goals of empowering patients associated with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) including Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis, as well as J-Pouch and Ostomy, to embrace their disease, be proud of their experience, and spread awareness throughout their communities. The Great Bowel Movement produces trendy “Ask Me” t-shirts designed to be worn out and about, and initiates conversations about IBD. It opens doors to conversations with colleagues or strangers, empowers those who wear them, and creates role models out of those who have overcome, or are overcoming, the challenges of living with chronic illness, who live their lives happily and successfully.

Results: To date, we've distributed over 1000 shirts to empowered patients, including a handful of free SponsorShirts to those who are out there going above and beyond to live their lives as examples and spread awareness. Over the past two years, we've donated to a variety of IBD and ostomy related charities as a result of our t-shirt sales. We're currently working with a team to develop more programs and resources to continue our mission of IBD awareness.

Community Stories

29 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I love TGBM. It's a wonderful community of people as well as informative. I'm very grateful for its presence on fb.

Melissa195

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

As a sister to someone struggling with Crohn's disease, I'm always looking to find help for him and my family. This group gives a voice to conditions that are rarely spoken about. That voice is so powerful to anyone seeking comfort. I'm so thankful for the group and all the positive things they do.

Laura203

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I stumbled upon GBM through social media and it has certainly given me a sense of community. Wearing their T shirts is one of the best ways to spread awareness. The passion and dedication for the work they do certainly shows through this organization. Their efforts are appreciated and I hope to see them grow and continue to raise awareness in the upcoming year!

2 Lauren77

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This group is using their great skills with language to help raise awareness of Crohn's and Colitis. They have constructed brochures that are very factual, fun and easy to understand. As a crohn's patient, I feel as though they are representing our community in a great way. I love the shirt i bought. I also think the individual who blog are inspirational, truthful and understanding. This group is present in other parts of the Crohn's community, such as Camp Oasis as well. KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!

1 Justin34

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I've been lucky enough to meet GBM at two events in Chicago and attend another in Fort Wayne, Indiana. They do a great job to spread awareness with informative blogs and help on topics ranging from school, to work, to dating. During events they provide non-pressure and non-fundraising situations for us to just enjoy a "normal" night out with others that share IBD.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The GBM is an excellent organization dedicated to raising awareness for IBD and providing the community with the latest IBD news and research. They are very creative in their mission shown in their awareness T-shirts and have a non-stop passion for helping those with IBD. Very highly recommend.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

A wonderful wonderful organization!!! They have been such a blessing in my journey with Crohn's Disease. Not only do they educate the public (I had no idea what Crohn's was until I was diagnosed) but they also encourage people with IBD to OWN IT! They encourage us daily to spread awareness and change the stigma of these diseases. They are warm and accepting and have such a positive outlook. I wish every type of chronic illness had an organization such as this one!

Ginny13

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I am a mom of a son with Crohn's x 27 years, who has been through about every complication, both with the disease physically -- surgeries, fistula, fungal infection from a med, gallbladder, countless meds -- and also emotionally - trying to hold onto a job, social isolation, wife who left. This site is invaluable for its educational aspect and it's support - not only for those who live with this every day but for those who love them. I cannot say enough good things about The Great Bowel Movement.

4 Lindsay21

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I've only known about the GBM for a few short months. I was diagnosed with CD in September 2013. Since then I've had two operation and far to many complication to list. As anyone who has IBD or anyone close to you knows what a isolating and lonely disease this can be. Not only does it beat me up physically it also beats me up emotionally. I LOVE this site!!!! It keeps me well informed and reminds me I am not alone. I especially love my ASK ME t-shirt. Some days we need to give ourselves a great big hug and remember we are doing the best we can and this shirt reminds me of that.

Thanks for everything you do!!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I can't say enough about this site. For years I suffered in silence with debilitating symptoms, too ashamed to tell a doctor. By the time I was diagnosed I was so sick at 20 years old that I thought I'd never get better. I felt so alone and I felt I had no where to turn. These folks have helped change all of that. The pays and interactions with others through this site truly changed how I cope with my IBD. It also gave me a way to educate others on my condition. I really, truly wish everyone diagnosed with IBD finds this site first because it changes everything.

2 Lauren70

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with UC in December of 2012. I had no clue what UC was or what my next step would be. I owe The Great Bowel Movement a big thank you for helping me with my journey so far. I like how they spread awareness not just to fellow IBDers but also to others who do not suffer from IBD. Their topics that are posted on Facebook are incredibly helpful as well! I love the way they have incorporated "Ask Me About My IBD" apparel onto their website for purchase. The apparel alone starts some interesting topics when worn out and about. I highly appreciate The Great Bowel Movement and what they do for people like me.

4 purpleproject

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I "celebrate" my 10 year diagnosis of IBD next year. Great Bowel Movement was a part of my journey to acceptance living with it. Not only does this non-profit use their merchandise as a great opportunity to provide awareness & promote acceptance, but they spend each day trying to educate others feature others blogs on their websites, educational & relevant material for those just newly diagnosed, a "seasoned" patient or a family member/loved one just trying to gain better understanding.

I've gotten to know each of the staff a little more each month & I could not be more excited for what is in store for each of them and each of the people they serve, with or without IBD. Not only are they each professionals dealing with Crohn's or colitis, but they take the time to chat individually and ensure they are able to provide the educational resources you may need.

Not to mention, they have figuratively the BIGGEST hearts in the world. If I have to live 10 more years on earth with this disease, I'm certainly glad to have GBM in my corner.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Not only are Megan and Andrea great people, but they've found a wonderful way to utilize their creativity to become a recognizable brand. The conversations that have started because of their products, leads towards raising awareness and acceptance. They truly care about people in the IBD community, as well as giving back.

2 Jessica151

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Megan and Andrea are amazing. They have started conversations for the IBD and non-IBD community to have. They have made digestive diseases empowering allowing all voices to be heard. The GBM has been a huge asset to me during times of hardship with IBD. The GBM including Megan and Andrea have inspired me to become more involved in the IBD community. They have taught me the importance of telling one's story to let others know that they are no alone. Recently becoming a blogger for the GBM, I have learned how much of an impact sharing one's story can be. The GBM is an amazing organization that has allowed people with IBD to speak about their disease in a fun and empowering way.

2 Meredith13

Client Served

Rating: 5

For the longest time, I didn't really talk about my Ulcerative Colitis. I didn't know anyone who had it either. After a really bad time health wise that included a hospital stay, medication changes, and my diagnosis changing to Crohn's disease, I knew I had to reach out and find some support and community-- meeting Andrea and learning about The Great Bowel Movement was very cathartic for me. I immediately felt drawn into a supportive, informative and fun group of people I knew I could count on. It also encouraged me to start talking about educating others about IBD. Just other night, while wearing my "Ask Me About My Crohn's Disease" shirt, I had such a great conversation with my two young daughters about this disease and why it is important to talk about it. I cannot thank you enough for that!

4 DanSharp

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first met Megan and Andrea (founders of The Great Bowel Movement) at Camp Oasis, a week-long summer camp for kids with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). It's a great program that allows kids to experience a level of normalcy and acceptance that can be hard to find in their daily lives. Megan and Andrea were two of the most welcoming counselors there. They made campers and staff alike feel comfortable talking about the disease we all shared. I quickly learned of the work they'd been doing with their organization, The Great Bowel Movement. My week working alongside them left me in awe! Despite suffering from IBD themselves, they were so giving of their time and energy to help others.

After camp ended, I was inspired by Megan and Andrea to get more involved in the IBD community. I started taking part in discussions on a number of online forums; most notably, The Great Bowel Movement's. I found Megan and Andrea to be great at facilitating open dialogue among the IBD community. I'd been living with severe IBD for over 20 years, and I'd never met anyone that could make people so comfortable with talking about their disease like the two of them. One of their slogans is "making Crohn's and Colitis cool since 2010", and they definitely live up to it. If you read their forum, you will find people who are proud to talk about their condition; people who used to be ashamed by it. With my participation in their forum, I started feeling more hopeful about not only my own future, but the future of everyone living with this disease.

Several weeks after camp, Megan suggested I join her and Andrea in the annual Midwest IBD Ride (a fund/awareness-raiser and bicycle ride). It was short notice; I would only have two weeks to raise funds and prepare myself for the ride. I was doubtful, but Megan was very encouraging so I signed up. Megan and Andrea's friends and family came out to support me both financially and emotionally. With their help, I was able to raise $1490 for IBD Research and Advocacy groups! I then rode 150 miles alongside Megan and others living with IBD. It was a great experience for me. I learned a lot about myself and how good it feels to be supported by a community of people that understand what I'm going through.

After the IBD Ride, I continued to participate in The Great Bowel Movement's online discussions- answering questions and giving advice when I could. Eventually, with my involvement becoming a regular thing, Megan and Andrea asked me to join their organization! I can't fully describe what an honor it is for me to be a part of such a wonderful cause! It has been a really pivotal year for me, and I've grown so much as a person because of my relationship with The Great Bowel Movement. I've gained a new perspective on my experience growing up severely ill, and I see now the good I can do for others because of it. It's given me the strength to reach out to more people living with IBD, especially kids. This summer, I'm volunteering at two different chapters of Camp Oasis (Wisconsin and Michigan). I will be able to show even more kids that they can lead a wonderful life even though they have a serious illness.

Megan and Andrea are a big inspiration to me and many others. They not only raise awareness of IBD, they also educate the public. They have given people from all walks of life a place to turn for guidance and hope when the burden of this disease is too much to bare alone. They have made an often embarrassing and scary illness into something to be proud of! They've shown so many of us the strength we all have when we share our illness with each other.

They have helped so many people through The Great Bowel Movement, even while working full time jobs, without asking for anything in return. I hope Megan and Andrea can continue to reach all their goals, because I believe we are only beginning to see the greatness they are capable of.

2 Marnina C.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ever since I was diagnosed with Crohn's Dosease in 2004, I have been on a mission to advocate for myself (as a patient in the medical world) and to educate others about Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). The GBM has been an inspiration to me on this journey. The founders of the GBM have created a platform to educate, inspire and empower individuals living with IBD. They have filled an unmet need in the IBD world for an informal, yet extremely professional Crohn's Disease and Ulcerstive Colitis community. The merchandise they have created such as their t-shirts that read, "Ask me about my Crohn's/Colitis/osteomy" and "IBD can't stop me," give patients an opportunity to publicly demonstrate that they are "bigger" than their disease. Unlike other organizations committed to IBD awareness, the GBM strives to translate patients' resilience into a strong sense of individual empowerment and a desire to educate others about IBD. Andrea and Megan are role models, true mensches and work incredibly hard to inspire IBD patients of all ages. I think that much of the IBD community would agree that the GBM is an inspirational non-profit that is truly inspiring, educating and changing patients' outlook on their disease.

2 Jackie35

Client Served

Rating: 5

I absolutely love The Great Bowel Movement. Not only have I come in contact with some amazing people who share IBD, but the "Ask Me About My..." clothes are a great ice breaker to help educate people about IBD. When I'm having a particularly bad day, I know that I will get love and support from the people on the Facebook page. And I also really enjoy doing the same for others! What's inspiring me to me is that the founders of GBM are both IBD patients, and run this amazing organization on top of full time jobs! There are days when I feel like I don't have the strength to do anything, and I think about how devoted they are to all of us. Keep it up, ladies!!!

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a IBD researcher, I love that The Great Bowel Movement not only enables people to share their experiences with Crohn's and colitis but that GBM promotes and gives back to other IBD-related charities. I interact with IBD patients in several states and I'm always excited to see them wearing "Ask me about my colitis/Crohn's/J-pouch" t-shirts. Their website not only gives patients a forum to ask questions, but is excellent at phrasing IBD patients' concerns in a way that can give non-patients a way to relate to our disease.

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a medical professional, I find that The Great Bowel Movement encompasses so many aspects of IBD. My patients really find the information that they receive useful and a great support. Andrea and Megan are truly compassionate about this cause and it shows in all that they do. I am proud of these girls and grateful for all that they have done.