On Thursday, March 1,local firefighters will take to the streets for the Burn Institute’s 19th Annual “Fill the Boot for the Burn Institute” Firefighter Boot Drive.
What began almost two decades ago as a grassroots effort backed by the fire service, the Burn Institute’s countywide Boot Drive has become a hallmark fundraiser for the organization raising over $220,000 for Burn Institute programs and services in 2017.
Each year, hundreds of uniformed firefighters from nearly every fire department in San Diego County come together for a common goal--to generate funds for the Burn Institute’s fire and burn prevention education and burn survivor support services. Hopping aboard their engines, firefighters hit the streets with their boots in hand at intersections around their local community to collect donations during the morning and evening commutes. Each year, passing motorists help to fill those boots with their spare change -- ones, fives, twenties – even $100 bills. No matter the economy or weather, San Diegans have always given generously. This year, dedicated firefighters from 35 departments will hit the streets at more than 100 intersections around the county.
Proceeds benefit the Burn Institute’s fire and burn prevention education programs and burn survivor support services such as Camp Beyond the Scars for burn-injured children. This unique camp program has provided a safe place for hundreds of young burn survivors to share their experiences in a supportive and nurturing camp environment. In addition, a portion of the Boot Drive donations are used to sustain the Red Line of Courage Fund, designed to provide financial support to members of the fire service who sustain a burn injury while on duty. This unique program assists with the immediate and long-term needs that arise while our local heroes are recovering from the trauma of a burn.
Sponsored by the San Diego–Imperial County Fire Fighters Advisory Council and the San Diego County Fire Chiefs’ Association, the Burn Institute’s 19th Annual Firefighter Boot Drive is the organization’s largest one-day fundraiser. All of the funds raised through the Boot Drive will stay locally in San Diego County. As always, the top fire department from each region will win the Burn Institute’s highly-coveted bronze Boot Drive trophy, as well as the much sought-after bragging rights.
“The partnership between the Burn Institute and the Fire Service is a natural one,” said Susan Day, Burn Institute Executive Director. “As a team, we can do great things for our community together.”
For more information on the Burn Institute, visit www.burninstitute.org.