Celiac Disease Community Connections

Today, the only way to treat the symptoms of celiac disease is to eliminate gluten from the diet. Though this may seem challenging at first, many families have successfully adapted to a gluten-free lifestyle that enables their children to participate in school programs and lead active lives.

At Stanford Medicine Children’s Health, we believe in the strength and knowledge of our patients and strive to support them in coping with all aspects of celiac disease. Our clinical staff continues to create opportunities for families and children to engage with each other to share information, experiences, and fun.

Celiac Clinic parent community

A group of passionate parents have banded together to connect the celiac disease community and provide support for each other. The group partners with the Stanford Medicine Children’s Health clinical staff and offers quarterly virtual meetings on relevant topics to help meet the challenges of living gluten free and to provide new perspectives. Planned events may include cooking demonstrations, hikes, and cookouts.

Peer-to-peer program

Stanford Medicine Children’s Health offers a celiac disease peer-to-peer program in which newly diagnosed patients and families can meet those who have been living gluten free for a while and benefit from their hands-on learning and experience. Clinic staff will help facilitate connections between parents, patients, or the whole family!

Participants find this program helpful for added perspective, emotional support, and fostering new friendships.

Celiac disease support groups

Additional support can be found in many local communities with online and in-person support groups and resources for families learning to live with celiac disease. Stanford Medicine Children’s Health can help patients seek out and connect with these groups, such as Bay Area ROCK (Raising Our Celiac Kids), Celiac Community Foundation of Northern California, Central Coast Celiacs, Gluten-Free Group at the Davis Food Co-op, and many others in the Bay Area. Talk to your celiac disease clinic staff to learn more about support in the area.

If you are interested any of these opportunities, please contact Garret Forshee, LCSW, at gforshee@stanfordchildrens.org