Worldwide, five million people live with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, conditions known as inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD).

World IBD Day is marked on 19 May each year. World IBD Day is led by patient organisation representing 35 countries on four continents from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, 28 European nations through the umbrella organisation EFCCA, Israel, Japan, New Zealand to the United States of America.

Please click on World IBD Events to see what happened this year in the individual countries.

Help us to raise awareness and join our fight against IBD!!!!

WORLD IBD DAY, 2022 - #ibdhasnoage

Event Date: May 17th, 2022

This year’s IBD event will feature the unveiling of a professional video in which patients across the age spectrum speak very candidly about what it is like to live with IBD. While their symptoms are the same, their challenges at different stages of their lives are very different. Throughout the Grand Hall there will also be an exhibit of over 100 personal stories that New Zealanders with Crohn’s and colitis have shared to convey the enormous impact these diseases have on their lives.

The event is being hosted by Brooke Van Velden, MP, who, along with several other MP’s, has worked very hard to support the IBD community..

Stewart Gollan – Illustrator

This illustration shows people of all ages who have risen above the challenges of an inflamed bowel, which is depicted below them.


New Zealand has one of the highest rates of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis in the world (known as Inflammatory Bowel Disease or “IBD”). World IBD Day, observed in over fifty countries, commemorates the five million people worldwide who live with these diseases every day of their lives. 20,000 of these people are our neighbours, friends, and family.

IBD does not discriminate by age or sex. It impacts the lives of children, teens, young adults, and the elderly. And it brings to each stage of life its own unique set of challenges.

From work to school, travelling, starting a job, becoming a new parent or grandparent, we hope that these series of films will give insight into what it is like to live with IBD.

The people in this film are not actors they are real New Zealanders who live with IBD. Thank you so much to Pete, Hannah and Charlotte for opening up and sharing their journey's with IBD.


Click here to watch the video>>




Event Date: May 24th, 2021

Exhibiting their artistic talents, politicians and leaders across New Zealand have put up their hands to raise awareness of people living with chronic illnesses. On 24 May, an artistic installation called “Unmasking IBD” will be unveiled at the Grand Hall of Parliament, representing the masks that people with chronic diseases like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis wear to hide their illnesses in everyday life.

Prominent New Zealanders are creating doodles, empathising with those behind the masks. These doodles will be exhibited as a key part of the installation created by Wairarapa artist, Katie Gracie, who was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis nine years ago.

The installation is being hosted by Health Select Committee member Chris Bishop in conjunction with Crohn’s and Colitis New Zealand Charitable Trust, commemorating World IBD Day which is celebrated in over fifty countries.

Dr. Richard Stein, gastroenterologist and Chairman of the trust, says, “The purpose of the installation is to highlight the fact that many diseases are “hidden”. There are people all around us, in the workplace, studying in our schools and universities, raising families who are dealing with challenges most of us cannot even imagine. This purpose of the installation is to raise awareness and to honour their strength”.

Katie Gracie, the artist, notes that “While the project is in commemoration of World IBD Day, it is to raise awareness of everyone who is living and dealing with a chronic illness.”

“Unmasking IBD” will be exhibited in several cities throughout New Zealand until the end of the year.




   May 19th, 2020

Crohn's and Colitis New Zealand is recognising World IBD Day on the 19th of May 2020, by asking patients with IBD to share some of their challenges that they have had to face since their diagnosis with IBD.

For more information, please look at these YouTube videos.


We are calling for people to donate to our Give a little page we have set up specifically for World IBD Day.



  WORLD IBD DAY, at Parliament 

   May 16th, 2012

Crohn's and Colitis New Zealand recognised World IBD Day on 16th May 2012 with a call to action to ‘join the fight against IBD. Over 100 local members and family, wearing purple t-shirts joined together to form a purple ribbon and then reformed to spell IBD on the grounds of the New Zealand Parliament.

The Associate Minister of Health Hon. Peter Dunne, along with Dr Jackie Blue talked of the very high rate of IBD in New Zealand  and the public release of the results of the European IMPACT report.

Watch us here on Breakfast TV (from about one and a half hours),  Michael Robinson had the opportunity to talk about his little brother's battle with Crohn's.


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