One of the difficult things about having a chronic condition is the isolation of being different. Family helps, but a friend that you can relate to and share fears and frustrations with is necessary.

Ten year old Miles Postlethwait has been in and out of hospitals since he was born with multiple congenital defects. During one of the many hospital stays, Miles told his parents he wished he had a friend “just like me,” someone who had similar defects and more importantly, someone who could share his feelings of being confined to hospitals and robbed of playing with friends.

Together, mother Marty Postlethwait and son Miles, created the first Shadow Buddy. “Heart eyes for love and a big smile to make everyone happy” were Mile’s idea. His thumbprint appears on all Shadow Buddies, giving the thumbs-up that everything is OK.

Shadow Buddies are designed to be both “the friend like me” and a teaching tool. Designed as warm, huggable Buddies for boys and girls of all races and ages, they can take the place of friends who cannot be around when needed most. They are also condition specific, demonstrating anatomically the physical results of treating a particular condition. For example, the “Ostomy Buddy” has a stoma, the “Cancer Buddy” has thinning hair, a surgical mask and a catheter in the chest for radiation and chemotherapy treatment. (There are more than 17 different Shadow Buddies available)

The Peace District Ostomy Association together with Hollister Inc. who donates the Ostomy Shadow Buddies to the Chapter, gave its first Ostomy Shadow Buddy to Jenna, a 7 year old with a gastrostomy. To date the Chapter has given 3 other Ostomy Shadow Buddies to Chase, Alyssa and Deena.


For more information regarding the Ostomy Shadow Buddies, please contact the Peace District Ostomy Association at 

780-532-8622 or email Dianne Lowe