Feel Good Friday

Written by Samantha Zepeda. Posted in Blog

OtterToday’s Feel Good Friday post comes to you from Anahi, who has been a part of the AARBF family for over 12 years and is currently attending her first semester at Cal State Monterey Bay – Go Otters!

What would you like all of the Growers to know about AARBF?

AARBF is personally, not only a burn foundation that assists burn survivors, but it’s a huge family that has been part of my life for over 12 years!  The foundation has made a positive impact in my life and I can owe it all to these people who are part of this foundation for making me the type of person I am today. I am just grateful that there are fundraisers like these to help provide more for the foundation for burn survivors, like myself.

How has the Foundation helped you get where you are today?

The foundation personally has made me who I am. I view life in a very positive and beautiful perspective, and I also view obstacles that come my way in a chance to let me grow as a person. Also those qualities that some people are embarrassed or ashamed of, either physically or emotionally, I view those beautiful and try to get them to notice them as a blessing. Besides helping me build my personality, the foundation has motivated me to pursue my dream goals because it has taught me that no obstacles, not even my burns, can stop me from my dreams.

What are some of your favorite memories with AARBF? 

AARBF has provided many memories that I will always remember and cherish, but the two amazing events that I always look forward to in attending would be Champ Camp and the Young Adult Summit. Champ Camp was the first event that I attended to when I first came part of the foundation and this event has given me all my friends that I love today. This camp is like my version of Disneyland because it is where I let go of all my troubles and get away from reality and get a chance to just have a good time with all these wonderful people with amazing backgrounds. Like Champ Camp, the Young Adult Summit is an event that I always look forward to because not only is it an chance to escape from reality, it is also a chance for me to think deep into my thoughts and remember why I am proud to be a burn survivior and also to look back to my past and be happy with what I overcame.


Thank you for your responses, Anahi!  Keep pursing all of the opportunites that CSU Monterey Bay has to offer!

Grower Profile: “Grizzie”

Written by Samantha Zepeda. Posted in Blog

GrizzieHow did you become involved with the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation?

I had a friend, Retired Deputy Chief  Don Ciucci from the Daly City Fire Department, who was an instructor at the College of San Mateo.  His daughter, Angelina, was a Champ Camp counselor, and he thought that I might also enjoy the Camp.  I like working with kids, so I interviewed to be a counselor in 2008.  I am happy to say that I have been to Champ Camp every year for the past 6 years, except for one year when I was in paramedic school.  It is a life changing experience!

What is your favorite part of being a Champ Camp counselor?

My favorite part of being a Champ Camp counselor is seeing how much the kids evolve in just the short time from when they arrive at camp, to a week later when they are getting on the bus to go home.  The kids open up so much during their time at camp, and are able to do things that they never had the opportunity to do before.  I am happy to be a part of it!

What impact does your mustache have on you?

My mustache is my alter ego.  I grow wiser with each strand of hair.