San Diego

Camp Beyond the Scars Transforms Burn Victims into Burn Survivors

Camp Beyond the Scars provides young burn survivors with a fun, safe, supportive, and inclusive camp environment that encourages healing, personal growth and character development within a natural setting.

Susan Day, Executive Director of the Burn Institute said the camp has proven to be a great experience. 

“Many times it’s the first time they get to meet a fellow burn survivor and share that common thread,” Day said.

This week, 45 young burn survivors, ages 8 to 17, will participate in a variety of activities and support sessions, specifically designed to help enhance self-esteem and coping skills.

Camp provides a nurturing atmosphere where each child can learn how to deal with the emotional and physical hardships they face as a result of their burn trauma.

“I’ve been here for a really long time so it’s nice to reunite,” said camper Madilyn Garcia. “It’s awesome to get the support every year.”

The object is to transform burn victims into burn survivors.

“Everyone understands everybody,” said camper Amy Grieshaber. “Everyone supports each other and there’s love and care.”

Many of the camp's counselors are off-duty firefighters and adult burn survivors who volunteer their time.

Established in 1987, Camp Beyond the Scars is one of the Burn Institute's most successful burn survivor support programs.

The Burn Institute is a local non-profit agency dedicated to reducing the number of burn injuries and deaths in San Diego and Imperial counties through fire and burn prevention education, burn care research and treatment, and vital burn survivor support services.

For more information call the Burn Institute at 858-541-2277 or visit

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