9 Best Charities That Help Burn Victims (Complete 2024 List)

9 Best Charities That Help Burn Victims (Complete 2024 List)

By
Alycia O'Dell

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In the US, around 450,000 people suffer burns severe enough to require medical attention each year, and about 3,500 die from their injuries. Furthermore, access to specialized burn treatment centers in America is limited, with just 77 verified burn facilities nationally. And internationally, low- and middle-income countries suffer over 180,000 burn-related deaths annually, many of which could be avoided with timely access to quality care. Fortunately, charities around the world are working to aid survivors of burn injuries throughout the healing process. So we had to ask: What are the best charities that help burn victims?

The best charities that help burn victims are the Burn Institute and the Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors. Charities like the Shriners Hospitals for Children and the Children’s Burn Foundation specialize in providing pediatric burn care and support.

Whether you want to help a child burn survivor find community at summer camp, provide financial assistance to families receiving treatment far from home, or fund training for doctors in low-income countries to better treat burns, there is a charity for you. Keep reading to learn more about what the best charities that help burn victims are all about, how they work, and what your best way would be to contribute.

Here’s What All the Best Charities That Help Burn Victims Have in Common

The charities on this list were chosen based on their mission, impact, transparency ratings, and achievements.

Most operate throughout the US, while others work to treat burn victims internationally.

Many of these charities provide direct services to burn victims, while others provide community education and awareness on burn prevention. Some cater to specific populations like children. Others provide treatment to anyone impacted by a burn injury.

Some of the charities below focus on helping burn survivors find strength in community, while others focus on ensuring that financial constraints do not hinder treatment.

Yet, they all share the same goal; to help burn victims and their families thrive.

These Are the 9 Best Charities That Help Burn Victims in 2024

Below are our favorite charities that help burn victims (you can click on their link to directly jump to their section in this article):

(At the end of this article we’ll also share our six-step approach on how you can select the best charity to support.)

1

Burn Institute: Helping Burn Victims Thrive

Logo for Burn Institute
Burn Institute Video

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Burn Institute holds a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“Empower burn survivors to thrive again.”

Burn Institute

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What they do:

The Burn Institute helps burn victims through programs aimed at recovery, prevention, and community support. For example, their Camp Beyond the Scars is a week-long recreational camping program for young burn survivors, during which campers participate in a range of activities that promote confidence, healing, and community. As another example, their support groups bring together burn survivors and their families for discussions about life after burn injury. Furthermore, they provide emergency financial assistance to families of recovering burn victims, and award scholarships to college-bound burn survivors.

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What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the Burn Institute has reached thousands of people through their prevention and recovery programs. For example, their Camp Beyond the Scars program has served more than 2,200 young burn survivors to date. As another example, in 2023 alone, they provided emergency financial assistance to 169 families and hosted 72 burn survivor retreats. In the same year, they installed almost 3,000 smoke alarms for seniors and reached almost 44,000 children through fire prevention presentations.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Burn Institute via their website. You can also support the organization’s mission by attending an event or volunteering.

2

Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors: Empowering the Global Burn Community

logo for Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors
Phoenix Society Impact

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors holds a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“Nothing heals people like other people.”

Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors

⚒️

What they do:

The Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors promotes lifelong healing for burn victims by connecting survivors, their families, and professionals to support, resources, and training. For example, their Phoenix SOAR (Survivors Offering Assistance in Recovery) program pairs burn survivors and families with trained peer supporters who have experienced the road to recovery first-hand. The organization also offers virtual peer support groups and an active Facebook group where survivors and families can connect and interact in an online, group setting. Moreover, they provide on-demand resources that promote a successful healing journey, including learning tools, guides, templates, and a partner directory.

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What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors has become the leading national nonprofit supporting burn survivors. For example, since 1985, they have hosted more than 20,000 people at their Phoenix World Burn Congress, the world’s largest gathering of burn victims, their families, burn care professionals, and the fire service industry. In 2023 alone, the conference hosted 720 attendees representing 12 countries. Furthermore, in 2022, their podcast, Girls with Grafts, released 13 episodes that were downloaded over 1,800 times, reaching listeners in 21 countries.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors via their website. You can also get involved by downloading Girls with Grafts, shopping through their online store, or creating your own fundraiser.

3

Shriners Hospitals for Children: Excellence in Pediatric Burn Care

Logo for Shriners Hospitals for Children
Power of Yes

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Their transparency & ratings:

Shriners Hospitals for Children holds a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator.

“A culture of innovation and transformational change.”

Shriners Hospitals for Children

⚒️

What they do:

Shriners Hospitals for Children provides high-quality specialty care to children, including those with burn injuries, regardless of their ability to pay or insurance status. Their American Burn Association-accredited hospitals in Texas, Northern California, and Boston provide comprehensive treatment for burned children, tailoring a treatment plan specific to each child and their family. They also provide wraparound services to support each child’s rehabilitation, including occupational and physical therapy, psychological and social services, and school support. Furthermore, they are a leader in the community of pediatric burn care research, contributing to some of the greatest advancements in the field.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Shriners Hospitals for Children’s specialized care has changed the lives of more than 1.5 million children, including those with burn injuries. Since they began treating burns in the 1960s, they have emerged as a leader in the field of pediatric burn care, and their teams include some of the world’s finest pediatric burn care specialists. As such, their physicians and care teams have contributed to most of the significant advancements in acute and reconstructive burn care, including advancements in critical care and metabolic management in severely burned children and the development of skin substitutes in wound management and scar mitigation.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Shriners Hospitals for Children via their website. You can also support their mission through fundraising or attending an event.

4

Children’s Burn Foundation: Comprehensive Care for Child Burn Survivors

Logo for Children’s Burn Foundation
Stop The Burn. Prevent The Accident (English)

🔎

Their transparency & ratings:

Children’s Burn Foundation holds a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“We help child burn survivors and families become thrivers.”

Children’s Burn Foundation

⚒️

What they do:

The Children’s Burn Foundation helps child burn victims through comprehensive physical, financial, and emotional care until the child reaches adulthood. For example, their Full Recovery program supports all aspects of the healing process, including life-transforming surgeries, specialized care, counseling, and housing and transportation assistance. As another example, their Teen Support Group and Children and Family Support Groups give burn survivors and families the chance to speak openly about their experiences among a like-minded community. Furthermore, their international partnerships and programs increase access to quality care for children in under-resourced countries around the world, including Ukraine, India, and Nigeria.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the Children’s Burn Foundation has helped hundreds of thousands of children and families worldwide find hope following severe burn incidents. For example, in 2022 alone, they impacted almost 164,000 people through their US programs and served almost 3,400 children internationally. Furthermore, their prevention and education programs have reached over 2 million children since the organization’s inception.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Children’s Burn Foundation via their website. You can also support the organization’s mission by joining their email list or purchasing Just Like You, a book written by teen burn victims with part of the proceeds benefiting the charity.

5

American Burn Association: Enhancing the Field of Burn Care

Logo for American Burn Association
National Burn Awareness Week

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Their transparency & ratings:

The American Burn Association holds a 3-star rating from Charity Navigator.

“The American Burn Association is dedicated to improving the lives of everyone affected by burn injury.”

American Burn Association

⚒️

What they do:

The American Burn Association helps burn victims by promoting and supporting burn-related research, education, care, rehabilitation, and prevention. For example, they enhance the quality and consistency of burn care through programs like their Burn Center Verification, which ensures Burn Centers across the US are operating efficiently and providing optimal care to patients. As another example, they offer a variety of specialized educational programs to meet the needs of the whole burn-care team, from Advanced Burn Life Support immediately following a burn injury, to Reconstructive Surgery. Furthermore, they support and advance burn research through their ABA Burn Research Network.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the American Burn Association has grown to serve more than 2,300 members across 33 countries. For example, they have investigated and verified 79 burn centers, and almost 7,300 professionals have become certified in Advanced Burn Life Support. Furthermore, in 2022, they held the first annual Burn Surgeon Forum, featuring 17 presentations over 2 days, with more than 80 attendees.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the American Burn Association through their website. You can also support the organization’s mission by attending a public event, utilizing their educational resources, or becoming a member.

6

Burn Foundation of America: Keeping Families Together During the Healing Process

Logo for Burn Foundation of America
Burn Foundation of America and Doctors Hospital host 'Shop With A Doc'

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Burn Foundation of America holds a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“Family is powerful medicine.”

Burn Foundation of America

⚒️

What they do:

The Burn Foundation of America helps burn victims and their families through services that mitigate the financial burden of burn recovery and keep families together. For example, their Jeffrey Vaden Chavis house provides free lodging and meals to families with loved ones being treated at the JMS Burn Center, which is within walking distance of the house. And for families receiving treatment elsewhere, they offer financial assistance toward lodging at local hotels. Moreover, they continue to support burn victims after the initial stage of their recovery by providing burn-related items like anti-scarring garments, mobility devices, and medications. They also provide transportation to and from follow-up appointments.

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What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the Burn Foundation of America has helped thousands of families navigate their loved one’s recovery from burn injuries. For example, in 2022, they served almost 1,200 burn survivors and their families by providing almost $240,000 in direct patient services and over 8,700 nights of free meals and lodging at the Jeffrey Vaden Chavis House. In the same year, they funded hotel stays for almost 3,000 loved ones.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Burn Foundation of America via their website. You can also get involved by volunteering, creating a fundraiser, or planning a community service project.

7

Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation: A Legacy of Hope

Logo for Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation
AARBF Perseveres in 2020

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation holds a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“Stop, drop, and roll.”

Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation

⚒️

What they do:

The Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation helps burn victims through their Survivor Services, designed to enhance the quality of life for burn survivors and their families. For instance, their Recreational Programs include camps, retreats, summits, and outings for burn survivors of all ages, like the Adult Retreat, Young Adult Summit, and Champ Camp. They also provide psychosocial support through Support Groups, Peer Support, and Re-entry Support as victims return to work or school. Additionally, they provide emergency assistance to families in need, including gas, groceries, and hotel stays during initial recovery and cosmetic support and medical supplies in the months and years following a burn incident.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation has impacted the lives of thousands of burn victims and their families. In 2021 alone, the organization’s Survivor Services helped 3,314 burn survivors and families find hope and community. For example, 257 families utilized their financial support, 848 participated in support groups, and 804 attended a recreational program. Moreover, the organization is known for popularizing “Stop, drop, and roll” as part of their Fire Prevention Week campaign in 1979.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation via their website. You can also show your support by volunteering or attending an event.

8

Doctors Without Borders: Real Doctors in Real Conflict Zones

Logo for Doctors Without Borders
What is Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)?

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Their transparency & ratings:

Doctors Without Borders holds a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

Medical care where it is needed most.

Doctors Without Borders

⚒️

What they do:

Doctors Without Borders provides emergency medical and humanitarian aid to people who need it most, including burn victims, in dangerous, volatile areas. For example, in 2023, they treated patients in Gaza following Israeli airstrikes, performing about 10 burn surgeries per day. Moreover, they opened a burn care unit in Atmeh, Syria, a year after the outbreak of the civil war, and to date, it is the only hospital treating burn victims in Northwest Syria. , treating over 37,000 patients from 2016 to 2023.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Doctors Without Borders has helped tens of millions of people in over 70 countries access high-quality health care regardless of race, religion, creed, or political affiliation, including burn victims. For example, their burn care unit in Atmeh, Syria, has treated over 37,000 patients since its opening in 2016. And, in 1999, they were awarded a Nobel Peace Prize for the non-discriminatory nature of their work.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate directly to Doctors Without Borders through their website. You can also support the charity by attending an event or by organizing a fundraiser.

9

ReSurge International: Surgical Care for Burn Victims in Low-Income Countries

Logo for ReSurge International
ReSurge Transforms Lives: Mission Video Short

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Their transparency & ratings:

ReSurge International holds a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“Access to care changes everything.”

ReSurge International

⚒️

What they do:

ReSurge International helps burn victims in low-income countries through direct care, training and capacity building, and advocacy. First, the organization selects promising surgeons and surgical teams in low-income countries. Next, the organization’s team of medical volunteers trains the entire surgical team in the latest techniques. Once the team is trained, they can become ReSurge Surgical partners, who can perform reconstructive surgeries funded by the organization. Finally, the Surgical Partner becomes a trainer themselves, perpetuating a cycle. They also provide ongoing training and mentoring, leveraging technology to virtually reach isolated surgical teams.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, ReSurge International has changed the lives of more than 138,000 people in low-income countries through reconstructive surgery, including burn victims. For example, In 2023 alone, they provided almost 4,300 hours of training to over 3,200 surgical staff across 17 countries, impacting more than 14,400 patients. In the same year, they supported the creation of the first-ever Plastic and Reconstructive Curriculum for the College of Surgeons of East, Central, and Southern Africa; the largest Surgical Training Institution in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to ReSurge International via their website. You can also support the organization’s mission by sharing their content on social media or attending an event

How Can You Select the Best Charities to Support?

The charities on the list are, we deem, the best charities that help burn victims. However, you may have a particular charity you want to support. Let’s look at what you can do to ensure your contribution has the most significant impact.

  • Check out the charity website. Charities that are worthy of your donations are transparent in their mission and their figures. Familiarize yourself with their history, mission, and values. Their website usually is the best place to start.
  • Identify the charity’s mission. Without a goal, the charity is likely to fail. If the charity’s mission isn’t clear, it’s probably worth looking for a charity that does have a clear mission. 
  • Check if the charity has measurable goals. An effective charity has clear goals. You want to know your donation will help the charity reach its goals. But if it doesn’t have targets, it’s likely to fail or squander your gift. The charity should be able to account for its spending and supply evidence of the work they do.
  • Assess the successes or goals the charity has achieved. You wouldn’t invest in a business if it kept missing its targets. In the same way, charities are like this too. If no one is assessing a charity’s progress in reaching its targets, the chances are they’re not making a substantial positive change.
  • Check the charity’s financials and stats. Trustworthy organizations will publish financial statements and reports each year. Some might be exempt from having to do so, but they should be able to provide them to public members who are interested in donating.
  • Locate sources who work with or benefit from the charity. Word of mouth and first-hand experience of a charity’s work lets you know the charity’s quality. If you’re able to do so, check out the charity for yourself or speak to someone familiar with it. This way, your donation will go to the right place. 

How Can You Best Support These Charities?

After you’ve made your decision, it’s time for you to decide on how you’d like to help the charities you’ve chosen. Check how you can help – each charity runs specific programs that have unique aims. Find out what the aim of such programs is and whether they are right for you. 

Here are a few ways you can help your chosen charity:

  • Donate money. You can find donation pages on the website of most charities. Your donation can be a one-time payment, or you can set it to be deducted regularly at different intervals. You can mostly pay via credit card, but some charities also take PayPal or Bitcoin payments.
  • Buy their official merchandise. Charities can also raise money by selling merchandise. So, you can support them by buying the mugs, shirts, caps, pens, pencils, and any other such items they may be selling. Ideally, you should buy as much as you can to share and spread the word about the charity’s activities.
  • Engage in volunteer work. As you’ve seen from our descriptions above, some charities engage in a lot of local and grassroots programs. You can help by taking on and organizing the program in your local area.
  • Help their fundraising efforts. You can spread the word about the charity in your workplace, school, church, etc., and hold creative fundraising drives on social media or offline within your small circles.
  • Share their stories. Most charities have compelling stories that you can share with your audience to attract more people to the cause.

Final Thoughts

Now it is up to you to select the charity that resonates most with you. And whichever charity you end up choosing and contributing to, we are sure that they will immensely appreciate your support. Hopefully, the information within this article has made this selection process a bit easier for you to support charities dedicated to helping burn victims—based on the causes that matter most to you.

Stay impactful,

Illustration of a signature for Alycia

PS: Finally, I want to leave you with a thought-provoking TED talk from Dan Pallotta, a leading philanthropic activist and fundraiser, about what is wrong with the way we think about charities – and what we can do about it:

The way we think about charity is dead wrong | Dan Pallotta

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