World Ostomy Day is celebrated every third year and is sponsored by the International Ostomy Association. The international motto of the 8th World Ostomy Day is “Many Stories, One Voice.”
The mission of World Ostomy Day is to improve the treatment of ostomates worldwide by bringing attention to the global public, the needs, and aspirations of ostomates and their families.
Here are just a few events that took place around the world on October 3:
The WannaWearOne Ostomy AWEARness 5k fundraising walk/run was held in Raleigh, North Carolina. The goal was to raise community awareness about people living with ostomy pouches (ostomates) including urostomy, ileostomy, ureterostomy, and colostomy. All proceeds benefited the United Ostomy Associations of America.
Ostomy Canada Society hosted the 3rd Annual Stoma Stroll Awareness Walk in various cities across Canada. The Ostomy Toronto Flash Mob was held at the base of the CN Tower/Ripley's Aquarium. Dancers were patients, members and supporters of Ostomy Toronto and its ever-growing community.
Ostomates and their relatives living in Germany spoke about their lives and experiences on the website www.weltstomatag.de. In addition, there was a postcard campaign. The postcard was distributed all over Germany, directly to ostomates, at events, doctors’ offices, hospitals, health insurances, pharmacies, medical stores, cancer counseling centers, and city councils.
Members of the Czech ILCO promoted the book, Long Live Ostomates, which contains 22 stories of ostomy patients from the Czech Republic and Slovakia. They also created their first ostomy calendar with photos of ostomates, ages of 5 to 50, issued by LIPOELASTIC company.
The board of the Icelandic Ostomy Association (ISILCO) conducted a survey regarding the attitude of the Icelandic nation towards ostomates and their use of public swimming pools. Secondly, they created an advertisement in the newspaper to remind others that ostomates are like other people and that it is safe for them to use public swimming pools without endangering other people's health or the environment.
FinnILCO organized an exhibition in Helsinki. Lectures and stoma articles were displayed along with a photo exhibition. Stoma nurse Janne Kukk from Estilco spoke at the event. The idea was to show two pictures of each ostomate – with and without a visible stoma bag. Each photograph carries a touching message written by the ostomate in the photo.