Outside CA Message – January 2023

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Outside CA Message – January 2023

My name is Andrew Mersmann and I am the Director of Programs and Services. Below is my message to you for the month of January 2023.

Wow, 2023.

How did it get here so fast? At the same time, we thought we’d never get here. Hoping you and yours are feeling refreshed and inspired for everything the new year holds. I know all of us at the foundation are excited to dive into all the greatness 2023 has in store.

While a fresh start sounds exciting, we know it can also feel overwhelming or stressful at times. Know you are never alone and our AARBF support groups throughout the month of January may be the exact connection and calm that will help you feel grounded and grateful. Our community is the most remarkable weave of relationships.

I look forward to seeing you soon and often!

If you are a burn survivor and family member and wish to be added to our monthly email, please email info@aarbf.org and indicate your region.

Young Adult Summit

February 17-20, 2023

The Young Adult Summit is a weekend long retreat for burn survivors between the ages of 16 to 20. Each Presidents’ Day weekend since 1997, approximately 25 burn survivors gather at Ocean Pines in Cambria, California to share their stories and strength.

The Young Adult Summit was created to meet unique challenges associated with growing up with burns. All teens must navigate high school, adopting a sense of independence and changing roles. The Young Adult Summit is for teens who deal with these issues in addition to their healing. Workshops and exercises engage teens in life skills lessons, team building, and networking. Each burn survivor gains tools, new knowledge and an opportunity to continue the friendships created at Champ Camp.

Click here to register and for additional information to help you plan for this weekend activity.

The Adult Retreat

February 17-20, 2023

The Adult Retreat provides a survivor-driven program allowing the opportunity for approximately 20 adult burn survivors to learn about their healing process and their journey as a burn survivor. This program is for adult burn survivors 21+ and is an intensive weekend, developed by burn survivors for burn survivors. It will include workshops, support groups and promotes healing, self-discovery and socialization.

Click here to register and for additional information to help you plan for this weekend activity.

Champ Camp - Counselor Registration

Champ Camp Counselor Dates: June 8-17, 2023

Calling all Champ Camp Counselors (Old and New)! Want to get involved in the nation’s largest summer camp for burn injured children? Champ Camp has been running for over 35 years and serves over 100 burn injured children each year. We spend a week in Wonder Valley dancing around, participating in all summer camp activities like: archery, dirt bikes, go carts, Atlantis, swimming, etc., and most importantly, building a community that supports and empowers burn survivors. If you are interested in becoming a counselor or if you are a returning counselor, please fill out the application using the link below.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to McKenzie “Bubbles” Dern at mdern@aarbf.org.

Support Groups

Caregiver – February 2, 2023 from 7:00pm – 8:30pm. This is an online state-wide support group for family members, caregivers, and loved ones of burn survivors. This group is closed to burn survivors. To register, please contact Scott Wertz at swertz@aarbf.org.

Spanish Speaking – January 17, 2023 from 6:00pm – 7:30pm. This is an online support group specifically designed for Spanish-speaking burn survivors. Contact me at amersmann@aarbf.org to register.

Statewide – January 19, 2023 from 7:00pm – 8:30pm. This is an online support group open to both burn survivors and their loved ones throughout California. To register, please contact Scott Wertz at swertz@aarbf.org.

Peer Support – Not everyone is comfortable in a group setting, which is why the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation offers one-on-one Peer Support. Peer Support is a power tool for healing from a burn trauma. There is something magical that happens when one survivor sits and shares their experience and healing process with another. Peer support can relieve the feeling of being all alone in your experience. Peer support can come in many forms; a burn survivor talking to another burn survivor, a parent talking to another parent or loved one. This service is not limited to burn survivors. A burn injury can affect the entire family, caregivers and other loved ones. Contact me at amersmann@aarbf.org to get started today.

Featured Videos

AARBF’s Multimedia Resource Library includes tip sheets, videos, stories, and so much more. Video content within the library has been developed by the AARBF Community; including our staff, volunteers, burn survivors and community partners! Below are our featured videos for July!

How to Control Anxiety

AARBF Wellness Team members Jamba and Poppy share ways to help you manage stress and anxiety through breathing.

Yoga Modifications

If you want to try yoga but think your body can’t do the yoga poses, then this video is for you. Our yoga team will show you how to modify the poses to suit your body.