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July 2022 Burn Bulletin

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July 2022 Burn Bulletin

AARBF 50th Anniversary Celebration-- Early Bird Tickets On Sale Now

Don’t miss out on the hottest event of 2022—AARBF’s 50th Anniversary Celebration! Join us for a fun filled evening at the Los Angeles Fire Department Museum featuring a taste of LA’s favorite food trucks, including the Kogi Truck, Vivace Pizza and Coolhaus Ice Cream while sipping on wine compliments of Foley Family Wines.

In addition to celebrating 50 years of service, we will be honoring the City of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles County Fire Departments and dedicating the “Origins of Stop, Drop and Roll” museum installation.

Early bird pricing ends on July 31st so grab your tickets soon! Sponsorships are available now – with opportunities to be featured in all printed materials. Thank you to our sponsors and those who have already secured your tickets. Click here to purchase your early bird tickets today.

Champy-On Exceeds Expectations

Our annual fundraiser, Champy-On, has exceeded its goal – raising over $51,100! A big thank you to all of the individuals and teams participating in this year’s campaign! We would also like to thank our generous donors for supporting our teams and AARBF.

To add a bit of fun to the campaign, we added some challenges for the participants. Congratulations to the following Champy-On Challenge winners: Grace Rivera, Samantha Valdez, Yara Heredia, Chris Turner, and Pradnya Bergdahl.

We would also like to give a huge shout out to the “Ultimate Champy-On” award winners, team Young Adult Council, for raising the most funds during the eight-week campaign!

Champ Camp Returns to Wonder Valley

On Saturday, June 11, 2022, counselors were lined up to greet 107 campers in Wonder Valley for Champ Camp 2022! We had a busy week planned and were excited to get started. Our campers ages 5-17 years old are divided into four groups: Buckaroos (ages 5-7 years old), Rancheros (ages 8-10 years old), Wranglers (ages 10-13 years old) and Seniors (ages 14-17 years old). Along with the campers, we welcomed the Counselors in Training (CITs) (ages 18-20). CITs are past campers who have returned to camp to train to be future counselors when they turn twenty-one. Out of our 107 campers, eleven of them were CITs.

We dedicated our social media accounts to Champ Camp for the entire week of June 11-June 18, 2022, so our followers could join in the fun! On Sunday, we showed our Wranglers honing their skills at the archery range, rock climbing and riding ATVs. On Monday, we featured our CITs who were busy shadowing counselors and learning how to be future leaders. Tuesday, we saw the Buckaroos getting busy with arts and crafts, riding go karts and dressing up for flagpole. We also saw the Rancheros spending time on the climbing wall, ropes course and zip lining, fishing, and go karts. On Wednesday, we shared the fabulous time the Seniors had spending their day on the water thanks to Camp Edison and Sierra Marina. We enjoyed more water fun thanks to the Wild Water Adventure Park where campers also enjoyed refreshing and tasty treats from Kona Ice, and lunch courtesy of Community Regional Medical Center. The day ended with dinner cooked by our friends with the Fresno Fire Department.

To see our posts, visit us on Facebook @AlisaAnnRuchBurnFoundation or Instagram @aarbf and be sure to follow us so you never miss a story!

Prioritizing Wellness at Champ Camp

Part of our Champ Camp staff is a Wellness Team. This team provides input on programs and activities to ensure the psychological needs of the campers are met. They also assist with ways to help ease the anxiety of new campers as well as those campers who may be experiencing some current challenges. To provide us with some insight to how they help campers, James “Jamba” Bosch and Alexis “Poppy” Castro created a video demonstrating how they use breathing to reduce stress. They also share some of their favorite items and techniques that provide the distraction the mind needs to allow the deep breathing which helps to reduce those anxious feelings.

This video can be found in our website’s Multimedia Resource Library.

The Chili Cookoff Returns to Champ Camp

After a two-year hiatus, the annual Chili Cook Off returned to Champ Camp. Congratulations to the Visalia Firefighters Association for winning the 2022 competition. We also congratulate our Best Booth winner Fresno Fire!

A special thank you to all of the 2022 teams for coming out and spending the day with us: CALFire/Fresno County Fire, Clovis Firefighters Local 1695, Community Regional Leon S. Peters Burn Center, Fresno Fire Investigation Unit, Fresno Fire Department, Kings County Firefighters Local 3747, Kingsburg Firefighters, Selma Fire Department, and Visalia Firefighters Association.

To see the action from the Cook Off and hear what some of the campers had to say, please visit: Thank you, abc30 Action News and Vanessa Vasconcelos for the fantastic coverage!

Family Fun with Angels Baseball

On June 26, 2022, we had a family fun day with the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim, CA. There were 15 burn survivors and 23 family members joining AARBF’s Margarita Rodriguez for the afternoon. We would like to thank our fabulous donors. Tickets for this game, were donated by the Angels Community ticket giving program. In addition to free game tickets, guests were provided with food and drinks donated by the Orange County Youth Sports Foundation. A special thank you to Tom Murphy and Andrea Manes for assisting with the donation.

Being Unique with Art Expression

On June 30, 2022, Kelly “Sunflower” Dern led the eight attendees of Art Expression in the art of tie dye. Tie dye is a great summertime craft that is super fun and easy to do, once you know how. Kelly walked everyone through the tie dye process step by step and at the end, everyone had wearable works of art. Each item of tie dye is unique and beautiful in its own way – showing us that we too are all unique and beautiful in our own ways! Kelly is a favorite guest speaker for Art Expression and we were delighted she was able to spend the evening with us.

Grab Your 9 Iron for AARBF

The Southern California Golf Tournament is returning for its 39th year on Monday, September 19, 2022 at the Via Verde Golf Club in San Dimas, CA. The cost is $220 per golfer and your entry includes golf, cart, dinner, tee gift, and more! If you cannot make it for a fun day of golf, you can still join us for dinner at 5:30PM.

Visit the 39th Annual Golf Tournament page for sponsorship and registration information:

Volunteer Opportunties:

Please check with your regional office for more information on upcoming volunteer opportunities.

For Northern California, please contact Scott “Scooter” Wertz at or 415-495-7223 Ext. 19

For Central California, please contact McKenzie “Bubbles” Dern at or 559-286-0710 Ext. 15

For Southern California, please contact Margarita “Cubby” Rodriguez at or 818-848-0223 Ext. 16

Upcoming Events:

July 28: (7:00pm – 8:30pm), Writing Expression, contact Daniel “Apollo” Chacon at or 415-495-7223 Ext. 18.

July 29-31: Northern California Outdoor Trip

July 31: Early bird pricing for 50th Anniversary Celebration ends.


August 2: (7:00pm – 8:30pm), Santa Clara Valley Medical Online Support Group, contact Scott “Scooter” Wertz at or 415-495-7223 Ext. 19 to receive log-in information.

August 4: (7:00pm – 8:30pm), Caregiver Support Group – Online Video Support, contact Daniel “Apollo” Chacon at 415-495-7223 Ext. 18 or to receive log-in information.

August 7: (1:30pm – 3:30pm), SoCal Survivors Online Support Group, contact Margarita “Cubby” Rodriguez at or 818-848-0223 Ext. 16 to receive log-in information.

August 9: (6:30pm – 8:00pm), Fresno Community Regional Medical Center Online Support Group, contact McKenzie “Bubbles” Dern at or 559-286-0710 Ext. 15 to receive log-in information.

August 10: (6:30pm – 8:00pm), North/East Bay Burn Online Support Group, contact Scott “Scooter” Wertz at or 415-495-7223 Ext. 19 to receive log-in information.

August 11: (7:00pm – 8:30pm), Burn Care Professionals Support Group, contact Daniel “Apollo” Chacon at 415-495-7223 Ext. 18 or to receive log-in information.

August 16: (6:00pm – 7:30pm), Spanish-Speaking Online Burn Survivor Support Group, contact Margarita “Cubby” Rodriguez at or 818-848-0223 Ext. 16 to receive log-in information.

August 18: (7:00pm – 8:30pm), Statewide Support Group – Online, contact Daniel “Apollo” Chacon at 415-495-7223 Ext. 18 or to receive log-in information.

August 25: (11:30am – 1:00pm), Saint Francis Online Support Group, contact Scott “Scooter” Wertz at or 415-495-7223 Ext. 19 to receive log-in information.

August 25: (7:00pm – 8:30pm), Music Expression, contact Daniel “Apollo” Chacon at or 415-495-7223 Ext. 18.

If you missed any of our past Burn Bulletins, please check out our archives.