CICRA is the specialist, national charity for children and young people with Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis and all forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
An increasing number of children are affected with 1 in 4 diagnoses being under 18. Many children with IBD are small for their age, making them appear younger than their classmates which can make them a target for bullies. Combined with the strain of living with their condition, this can make them become withdrawn, anxious and depressed. Relapses can be particularly difficult to deal with emotionally. Children with IBD require treatment with medicines. Steroids are a common treatment and have distressing side effects, which affect a child’s appearance (e.g. weight gain, puffy face and acne), mood and behaviour. Others suppress the immune system, leaving children more vulnerable to normal infectious diseases like chicken pox. Some children will also have a nutritional feed via a nasogastric tube. Children with IBD will need to visit hospital for regular routine appointments and for invasive investigations, including endoscopy. Some children will require surgery to remove diseased sections of the bowel and some may need a stoma.
This is a really exciting time for CICRA and we are building a team to achieve our ambitious ten-year plan to give us as good as a cure. With support from specialists at the leading UK children's hospitals and the incredible young people who inspire us every day, we are focussing on four goals driving our work:
As a passionate champion of the voice of children and young people with IBD, we are growing the information and support we offer for different stages of childhood, and we need to raise the funds that can make something special happen. Will you join us?
Our vision is a childhood unlimited by inflammatory bowel disease
Our mission is to lead research into better treatments, to support children and families with relevant information and advice, to work with health professionals to improve care and to give children a voice to increase public understanding of crohns and colitis.