By Alice Bast, Beyond Celiac CEO
I am excited to share the news that the Beyond Celiac communications team has been recognized for their outstanding efforts in spreading knowledge about celiac disease! The team’s strategic approach and unwavering dedication to elevating the patient voice have earned them the well-deserved Nonprofit/Government Communications Team of the Year award in the prestigious Ragan & PR Daily’s Communicator of the Year Awards. In the realm of healthcare communication, few accomplishments are as commendable as effectively raising awareness about a widely misunderstood disease. The Ragan award recognizes that Beyond Celiac is doing this job at an unmatched level.
At Beyond Celiac, it is our mission to illuminate the often-misunderstood world of celiac disease, shedding light on the seriousness of this autoimmune condition and the various symptoms it encompasses. My comms team works day in and day out to bridge the knowledge gap between the general public and patients who need the gluten-free diet as a medical necessity.
To achieve this, the Beyond Celiac communications team harnesses the power of data and storytelling. Quantitative and qualitative research serve as the foundation for the compelling stories, reports, shareable social media posts, infographics, and informative emails that earned Beyond Celiac this award. My team leverages multiple channels to reach diverse audiences, maximizing our impact and ensuring that our messages resonate far and wide. We do this in a way that is inviting and innovative, colorful and compelling as evidenced by the way people engage with our messages on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tik Tok, YouTube, LinkedIn and through emails and on our website.
Voices of Celiac is one of our outstanding initiatives. By showcasing the diagnosis stories of individuals affected by celiac disease, the team fosters empathy and understanding in those who may not understand how difficult it is to get diagnosed with celiac disease and manage the gluten-free diet. The stories told by people with celiac also resonate with folks who are going through similar challenging experiences.
Through a dedicated page on our website, press releases, media coverage and social media platforms, these narratives have found their way into the hearts and minds of countless individuals, creating a powerful ripple effect of awareness and compassion. We are truly putting a face to and giving a voice to those with celiac disease. And that face and those voices are being recognized and heard outside the celiac disease community.
Our groundbreaking “2022 Landscape of Celiac Disease Report – Beyond Celiac,” produced in collaboration with The Harris Poll, provided invaluable insights into the way the general public perceives celiac disease and gluten sensitivity.
With this report, the team armed themselves with concrete data to fuel their communication efforts. They expertly disseminated the findings through press releases, dedicated landing pages, mass emails, and a targeted social media campaign. Notably, articles were posted on the other organization’s websites, spotlighting specific takeaways, including the disparities among Black Americans in awareness and treatment of celiac disease.
The impressive results of the Beyond Celiac communications team’s endeavors speak for themselves. Sharing close to 200 unique patient stories that underscore the gravity of celiac disease gives a voice to those who have long suffered in silence, and The Landscape of Celiac Report landing page has received nearly 3,000 page views, while the report itself reached an impressive 997 Associated Press outlets. Additionally, HealthDay, a renowned syndicator of health news, featured an enlightening story that reached esteemed publications like US News & World Report, amplifying the crucial message of Beyond Celiac.
It is through the tireless work of passionate individuals like those on the Beyond Celiac communications team that breakthroughs in disease awareness are made possible. And with this greater understanding, we are able to work together with our community to accelerate research for treatments and a cure and have real hope that we will not be forever shackled by the confines and fallibility of the gluten-free diet. By shining a spotlight on the ways celiac disease can affect everyday life, Beyond Celiac has brought about tangible change, dispelling misconceptions and fostering a greater understanding of this autoimmune disorder. The team’s commitment to transforming lives through communication has truly set them apart, and their recognition as the Nonprofit/Government Communications Team of the Year is a testament to their outstanding achievements.
As we celebrate the team’s recognition as the best of the best in communicating about and with the celiac disease community, we also take this moment to reflect on the power of effective communication and the profound impact it can have on individuals and communities. Let us champion the values of understanding, compassion, and knowledge in our own efforts to make the healthcare field—and ultimately the world—a better place.