Gutsy Learning Series and Webinars

The Gutsy Learning Series and Webinar events provide unparalleled access to Canada's top IBD researchers and healthcare providers! It is a special opportunity to connect directly with leaders in the field and strengthen your knowledge of Crohn's and colitis across a variety of topics, including medication and emerging treatments, diet and nutrition, symptom and flare management, complications and extraintestinal manifestations, mental health, pregnancy and more.

The series is accessible throughout the year online from anywhere with internet access, and across Canada for in-person events. All of our events are recorded for future viewing on our Past Event Videos page.

Registrants have the opportunity to get their questions answered by the experts during an interactive, live Q&A period. Questions can be asked ahead of time during registration or the live broadcast. Can't join us live, register for webinar(s) and we will send you a link to the recording!

Scroll down for upcoming events, or click here to watch past event videos.

Upcoming events

Surgery and Ostomy for Crohn's and Colitis 101

Date: October 24, 2023
Time: 7:00 - 8:30 pm ET

Did you know that surgery may be an effective long-term treatment option for people with IBD? Have you been wondering about how to improve your quality of life when living with an ostomy?

IBD can be a puzzle. An ostomy can be that missing piece. Join us to hear about why people with Crohn’s or colitis may need to undergo surgery, including an ostomy, to better manage their disease. Connect with an expert gastroenterologist to hear more about surgical treatment options (e.g. colectomy, ileostomy or J-pouch creation, resection), types of ostomies (permanent vs. temporary), the benefits and risks of surgery, and what to expect before, during, and after surgery.

You will also get advice on how to live comfortably with an ostomy after surgery and align your daily activities with your ostomy pouch management routine, including diet, exercise, work or school, and intimacy. Other impacts of living with an ostomy, such as coping with mental health, pregnancy, and travelling will also be discussed. 

You will have the opportunity to ask your questions ahead of time when you register or live during the event. 

This event is will be offered in French, with live simultaneous English interpretation.


Dr. Colette Deslandres (M.D., Ph.D.), Dr. Frank Schwenter (M.D., Ph.D.), Mrs. Chantal Leduc (R.N.), and Marc Rouleau!

Dr. Colette Deslandres is the head of the Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition Department at the CHU Sainte-Justine, University of Montreal since 2014. She is a Clinical Professor at this institution and directs the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Program (IBD) at CHU Sainte-Justine since 2005. Her main research interests include the onset and evolution of IBD, the microbiome, and emerging IBD therapies. Dr. Deslandres has authored an educational chapter on IBD and Ostomies for Crohn’s and Colitis Canada’s Promoting Access and Care through Centres of Excellence (PACE) network. She has also published 80 articles in peer-reviewed journals, 15 book chapters, and 90 abstracts and received the 2018 Award of Excellence – Clinic of the University of Montreal for her work in the Department of Pediatrics.

Dr. Frank Schwenter is Clinical Associate Professor at the Université de Montréal and works in the CHUM Digestive Surgery Department, focusing on colorectal oncology and inflammatory disease surgery. He obtained a Doctorate in Medicine and Science (M.D., Ph.D.) from the University of Lausanne in the Center for Surgical Research and Gene Therapy. He also completed a post-doctoral research fellowship at the University of Toronto on the genetics of colorectal cancer, before specializing in digestive oncology surgery in the Fellowship program at McGill University in Montreal. Dr. Schwenter has published in both primary and clinical research, participates in various research protocols in Montreal and Geneva, and is involved in teaching at the Université de Montréal.

Chantal Leduc is a nurse clinician specializing in pediatric ostomy therapy at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire (CHU) Sainte-Justine. She has been with the hospital for 35 years, and over the past 23 years has developed expertise in wound and ostomy care. She acts as a resource person for staff, collaborating with medical teams and families. Involved in training programs at the hospital and in the healthcare network, she works to create the right conditions for skills acquisition and team development.

Marc Rouleau is from Sainte-Marguerite, Quebec, and is a proud husband and father of two. He was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease in 1994. He has often been hospitalized and has undergone several surgical interventions, including a complete colon removal (colectomy). Today, Marc is a valued Gutsy Support mentor with Crohn’s and Colitis Canada. He is also actively involved in his regional community, has a fulfilling career, and follows his passion for skiing. His life is marked by his determination to overcome the challenges of his disease, and he hopes to inspire others in similar situations.

How to Register

Please click here to register for the webinar on October 24, 2023 at 7:00pm ET. Can't attend live? Register for the webinar and we'll send you a link to the recording. Please submit your questions ahead of time using the registration form.

The Mediterranean Diet for Crohn's and Colitis

Date: January 18, 2024
Time: 7:00 - 8:30 pm ET

Do you struggle to find a diet plan that suits your nutritional needs without triggering your symptoms of IBD? Are you looking to find out about a diet that may be beneficial for people with Crohn’s and colitis? 

Register for our Mediterranean diet for IBD webinar on Thursday Janurary 18, 2024 from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm ET to hear about which foods are included and excluded in this diet and its anti-inflammatory benefits for people with Crohn’s and colitis. You will have the opportunity to connect virtually with IBD experts on the latest scientific evidence on the Mediterranean diet and the impact of diet on the gut microbiome in IBD, including research that was funded by Crohn’s and Colitis Canada.  

Ask your questions ahead of time when you register or live during the event. This event will be offered in English, with live simultaneous French interpretation.  


Dr. Deanna Gibson (Ph.D.) is a Professor in the Department of Biology at the University of British Columbia on the Okanagan campus. She studies the impact of environmental triggers, like diet, on the gut microbiome and how this influences immunometabolism and the gut-brain axis in IBD. Dr. Gibson was the 2017 recipient of the Crohn’s and Colitis Canada grant program examining how the Mediterranean diet pattern alters the gut microbiome, inflammation and disease symptoms in ulcerative colitis. She has created novel genetically modified microbial medicines and examining how they reduce colitis moving towards the commercialization pathway for novel drugs designed for IBD. She is the co-chair for the CCC Scientific and Medical Advisory Committee and sits of the board of directors for CCC.

Dr. Natasha Haskey (R.D., Ph.D.) is a clinician-researcher whose work focuses on nutrition for IBD and the links between diet, inflammation and the gut microbiome. She completed her PhD in June 2022, under the supervision of Dr. Gibson. Dr. Haskey is continuing her research journey, working with Dr. Maitreyi Raman at the University of Calgary as a Post-doctoral fellow studying how intermittent fasting influences Crohn's disease. She has also been accepted into the TRIANGLE program which is a national training program aimed at transforming research and patient care in gastroenterology and liver, partly funded by Crohn’s and Colitis Canada.

How to Register

Please click here to register for the webinar on January 18, 2024 at 7:00pm ET. Can't attend live? Register for the webinar and we'll send you a link to the recording. Please submit your questions ahead of time using the registration form.

Past events and videos

All of our GLS talks are recorded for future viewing. Please click here to watch past presentations on our Gutsy Learning Videos page.

Need Help or Have questions?

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The Gutsy Learning Series presentations could not occur without the support of our generous sponsors:


  • Canada has among the highest incidence rates of Crohn's and colitis in the world.
  • 1 in 140 Canadians lives with Crohn’s or colitis.
  • Families new to Canada are developing these diseases for the first time.
  • Incidence of Crohn’s in Canadian kids under 10 has doubled since 1995.
  • People are most commonly diagnosed before age 30.

Other Areas of Interest