26 June, 2015
The Colostomy Association has been helping challenge the stigma around stomas in children with their first ever Pouch Craft competition.
Four children are born in the UK each day who will be affected by conditions that may result in a stoma. Growing up with an ostomy can be challenging: these children often face embarrassment, bullying and isolation.
To help end this stigma, the Colostomy Association has been visiting schools and arts clubs, encouraging children to draw on and decorate stoma bags for their Pouch Craft competition. Dozens of entries were submitted for the first ever competition with drawings, mosaics and other unique entries.
The competition was judged by CA volunteer and Berkshire artist, Margaret Simister. The winner of the competition was Araliya Devi Sunthareswaran from the Coffee & Craft club in Reading for her mosaic of her house.
Araliya’s mother, Ishanie, said: “We were delighted to participate in the Colostomy Association’s campaign. Our daughter, Araliya, is thrilled that her design was chosen from many submissions. Araliya very much enjoys arts and crafts and helping others. She is so happy to know that she has made an important contribution to the Association’s work in improving the quality of life of people.”
The competition also helped raise awareness of the Colostomy Association’s new helpline, JOSH. The Junior Ostomy Support Helpline is a new service for parents of children with bowel and bladder conditions who are looking to speak to someone who has had experiences of the challenges they face.
Due to the success of the competition, the Colostomy Association is planning to launch further Pouch Craft competitions in other parts of the UK in the next year.