Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of Canada and AbbVie Corporation Awarding Scholarships to Empower Seven Incredible Youth with IBD

Nominations now being accepted for Second Annual Scholarship Program that rewards remarkable students living with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.

TORONTO, March 21, 2013 /CNW/ - Canada has one of the highest reported prevalence of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in the world and 20-30% of people with IBD are diagnosed before the age of 20*.  To support Canadian students living with IBD and raise awareness about this chronic disease, the AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program is accepting nominations from young people living with IBD.

In partnership with the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of Canada (CCFC), the AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program is designed to award students who are living well with IBD, and strive to sustain an optimal level of wellness allowing them to excel while inspiring others to do the same. Through an unrestricted educational grant by AbbVie, CCFC will extend seven (7) one-time scholarships of up to $5,000 CAN to students living with IBD who are entering into or are currently attending a post-secondary educational institution. Students of all ages are welcome to apply and the scholarship can be used for any Canadian post-secondary institution.

"I am committed to living each day to the fullest and I'm so grateful to the CCFC and AbbVie for giving me the opportunity and inspiration to push harder and help me excel at my academic goals," says Clinton Shard, one of seven (7) 2012 "gutsy" scholarship winners.  "While the monetary scholarship provides an incentive, it also represents an investment in assisting students living with IBD and helping us achieve our dreams."

Through initiatives such as the scholarship program, AbbVie aims to continue accelerating the recognition of the burden of IBD and help further the global dissemination of evolving approaches to better care for people living with IBD.

"AbbVie is proud to partner again this year with CCFC for the AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program. This initiative is a great example of a partnership that makes a difference in people's lives," states Felipe Pastrana, General Manager of AbbVie Canada. "While our name, AbbVie, has changed - our commitment to the IBD community endures. Over the years, AbbVie has shown continued commitment to people living with IBD by helping organizations and health care providers alike better understand the impact of these diseases on people's lives. AbbVie recognizes the need for better disease diagnosis and monitoring to help improve the lives of millions of people affected by this chronic and debilitating disease."

IBD Incidence Rates on the Rise
Inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD, is a group of disorders that causes the intestines to become inflamed and ulcerated.  This is caused by an abnormal response of the body's immune system.

A recent survey conducted by the CCFC found that 69 percent of people who had IBD when they were young were delayed in completing their post-secondary education. 89 percent who had IBD as a child felt that they could have achieved more at school without their disease. Since there is currently no known cure or cause, young people need strategies to achieve their best long-term health despite their diagnosis.

Unfortunately, a majority of people living with IBD endure many challenges when it comes to their education. With intensive medical treatments, debilitating symptoms and lengthy hospital stays, keeping up with school can become extremely difficult.

"Due to the isolating nature of the disease, people living with IBD too often miss out on the great life experiences many of us take for granted, including completing their education," says Dr. Kevin Glasgow, CCFC's Chief Executive Officer.  "The AbbVie IBD Scholarship was born of the desire to support students with Crohn's and colitis and help empower them to continue their education and excel to their fullest potential.  Our challenge is to find more youth like Clinton who are speaking out to help reduce the stigma associated with digestive disease.  By telling their stories through the AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program, we know we can inspire many others to do the same at a time when advancing public understanding of IBD is needed most."

The AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program - The A, B, C's
The AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program, in partnership with CCFC, is designed for applicants of any age entering into or attending a Canadian-based post-secondary institution. Applicants must be:

  • A legal and permanent resident of Canada;
  • Diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease by a physician;
  • Seeking an associate's, undergraduate, or graduate degree from a Canadian university; college; or enrolled in a trade school educational program;
  • Enrolled in or awaiting acceptance from a Canadian-based post-educational institution for the Fall semester of 2013; and
  • A student who demonstrates academic aspiration and strives to sustain an optimal level of wellness in spite of their IBD, allowing them to excel to reach their personal and academic goals and inspiring others to do the same.

Visit for full application details.

About CCFC

  • The Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of Canada (CCFC) is a volunteer-based registered charity dedicated to finding the cure for Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis and improving the lives of children and adults affected by these chronic diseases. To date, the CCFC has invested more than $76 million in research, making the foundation a world leader in non-governmental funding of IBD research.
  • Canadian researchers funded by CCFC are conducting cutting edge research and are sustaining the hope for a cure worldwide.

For more information about CCFC, please visit

About AbbVie
AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV) is a global, research-based biopharmaceutical company formed in 2013 following separation from Abbott. AbbVie combines the focus and passion of a leading-edge biotech with the expertise and structure of a long-established pharmaceutical leader. The company's mission is to use its expertise, dedicated people and unique approach to innovation to develop and market advanced therapies that address some of the world's most complex and serious diseases. AbbVie aims to help patients live healthier lives and collaborate on sustainable healthcare solutions. AbbVie employs approximately 21,000 people worldwide and markets medicines in more than 170 countries. For further information on the company and its people, portfolio and commitments, please visit or Follow @AbbVienews on Twitter or check out careers on our Facebook page.

* The Impact of Inflammatory Bowel Disease in Canada 2012 Final Report and Recommendations

In addition to CCFC's professional staff, CCFC has committed volunteers and members across Canada who are willing to speak with media about their experience with IBD. If you would like to speak with one of our volunteers, or for more information, please contact Ive Balins or Adriana Lurz at Strategic Objectives.

SOURCE: Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of Canada (CCFC)

For further information:

CCFC:  Tel: (416) 366-7735.  Fax: (416) 366-2295. Email:
AbbVie: Tel: (514) 717-3764.  Fax: (514) 832-7846. Email:

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Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of Canada (CCFC)

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