Fund Spotlight: The Deanna Zeitlow Crohn’s Disease Assistance Fund

Fund Spotlight: The Deanna Zeitlow Crohn’s Disease Assistance Fund

The Deanna Zeitlow Crohn’s Disease Assistance Fund was established in October of 2019 with the intention of helping those diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease. The fund, started by the Zeitlow family, is named after Deanna Zeitlow who has dealt with the condition for most of her life.

Deanna Zeitlow spent time in the hospital in the 1960s and ultimately needed surgery before receiving her diagnosis. After that point Deanna and the Zeitlow family realized just how dreadful the disease could be.

Crohn’s disease is a chronic inflammatory condition of the gastrointestinal tract and according to the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation the disease affects around three million Americans. Treatment options for Crohn’s Disease include medication and surgery. Those diagnosed with the disease often have to make changes to their diet in order to maintain good nutrition.

“We’ve seen so many people who have had (Crohn’s) and the financial struggle it brings,” Leonard Zeitlow, Deanna’s husband, said, “There are 13–14-year-old kids that have (Crohn’s) and are going to have it their entire lives.”

Between $500-1000 will be made available to each recipient annually. This financial relief is meant to help offset costs of uncovered treatment, medication or living expenses associated with Crohn’s disease.

Funding is also available for education programs so that employers, teachers and the community as a whole can better understand life with Crohn’s. As the fund grows there will be options for funding research programs related to cures and treatments for Crohn’s.

“Hopefully it will educate more people about Crohn’s,” Zeitlow said,  “I’ve known employers who have had employees who have had to stop working because of it and we have to get them assistance.”

Applications for assistance are accepted year round and can be found here.