Walk and funday to fund IBD research

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.Jessica Giancola, organizer of the Fitness Sunday Funday, has Crohn's disease and created the event to help fund the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation to help find a cure. She said she hoped the event would also raise awareness for disease and how common it is. Pictured is Giancola with Scrappy.


Neighbors | Zack Shively.Jessica Giancola created a 5k and mile run/walk event at Austintown Township Park on April 14 to benefit the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. Pictured, from left, are those who helped create the event, Cathy Angela, Jessica and Michael Giancola.


Neighbors | Zack Shively.The 5k and mile run/walk at Austintown Township Park was a part of the Fitness Funday event to raise funds for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. The event had a few local vendors, a walk and a dancing workout inside the Stacey Pavilion.



Austintown Township Park hosted the Fitness Sunday Funday 5K Run/Walk on April 14 to benefit the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation.

Jessica Giancola organized the event. She is involved with the Take Steps fundraising event in Cleveland and has become a spokesperson for the program in the Youngstown area. The event had a 5k and mile track set up in the park and vendors, dancing and information on Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis inside the Stacey Pavilion building.

Giancola was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease three years ago. An avid runner, she got involved with the Take Steps program in Cleveland and wanted to create a local event to raise awareness about the disease and ways to help the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation find a cure.

“It makes sure people know how common these diseases are,” said Giancole about the Take Steps and Fitness Sunday Funday programs.

Representatives from the Northeast Ohio Chapter of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation at the event gave information about the diseases to those at the event. Both Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis are forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). More than 1.7 million people have IBD in the United States and three million worldwide.

The funding for the event will go to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, which will use the money to fund research to find a cure for the disease, fund camps, help patients and support caregivers.

Giancola is a part of the Take Steps team Princess Poopy Pants. She will be named an honorary hero at Take Steps Cleveland on June 24.

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