At age 6, Oli began experiencing severe stomach and digestion issues. A series of tests revealed that she was suffering from ulcerative colitis, an autoimmune disease that causes ulcers and inflammation in the large intestine.

While Oli appears physically fit, she often suffers through pain crises in silence, with friends, family, and classmates unaware of how uncomfortable she is. Beyond the physical pain, normal tasks like going to school or meeting up with friends can fill her with anxiety: the flare-ups can occur at any time, without warning.

Oli says she feels recognized at UCSF because the doctors and nurses listen to her. "It is a place where not only I, but my entire family, feel comforted and welcome," she shares. "We trust that they will take care of me because I’ve gotten through many difficult times."

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