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Stephanie is an active member of DHA who is inspiring others with her positive attitude and her pursuit to raise funds for gastroparesis research. Diagnosed with gastroparesis five years ago, Stephanie is determined to live the best life possible – and to do her part to raise awareness and funds for this complicated disorder.

So she started the Annual Awareness Walk for Gastroparesis and Digestive Health. This year marked the 2nd year for the event. On September 7, 2013, Stephanie and her family and friends took to the trails in Bellingham, Washington, wearing their green awareness t-shirts and spreading the word about why research for gastroparesis is so important.

Stephanie selected a local trail for her walk that starts at a downtown farmer’s market, giving her the opportunity to engage with even more people who might be out on a fall weekend. Volunteers manned an information table and shared stories with people that came by, letting them know about gastroparesis, the Digestive Health Alliance, and why research for digestive health is important. Stephanie also worked with local sponsors for silent auction items and participation packets for walkers and donors. And for the second year in a row, blue skies and sunshine rained down on her event, providing a beautiful backdrop on which to showcase all of her hard work.

Stephanie has a strong passion to make a difference for those living with gastroparesis. Since beginning her journey, her efforts have resulted in more than $15,000 in donations for gastroparesis research through DHA and IFFGD. She’s also sold nearly 200 special Awareness Walk t-shirts, which her supporters can wear all year to raise awareness for her special event and the purpose behind it. Stephanie also hopes to expand the Awareness Walk and inspire others to host walks across the country to raise much needed awareness and funds for digestive health.

Thank you, Stephanie—for everything that you do. You’re a true inspiration.

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