The After Burns Club Helps Create a Safe and Fun Space for Patients
In March of 1999, Justina Page’s life was changed forever when her Houston home went up in flames.
Justina survived, but the devastating house fire tragically killed her 22-month old twin son, Amos, and severely injured her other twin, Benjamin. Justina herself also suffered third-degree burns over 55% of her body as a result of the fire. That tragedy, and the ensuing grief and road to recovery, inspired her to create the Amos House of Faith organization, which helps families heal after burn trauma.
Page felt compelled to help others affected by burns tragedies, especially children. She wanted to create a group that would offer support and encouragement to burn survivors, and their siblings. “The After Burns Club gives children a safe space to express themselves and offers them a support group for what they might be going through,” Page said. She began to hold meetings at Shriners Children’s several years ago, including one recently held in March of this year.
“This was birthed out of a lot of pain,” Page said as she looked around at all of the happy families and laughing children working hard on creating vision boards. Glitter, magazine clippings, glue and markers cluttered the cafeteria’s tables, as they worked to illustrate their hopes for the future and what that will look like.
Page’s visit to Galveston marked the first since the pandemic. She hopes to reestablish monthly visits to the hospital to continue the work of the ABC Club, which tries to focus on one topic per meeting that might be important to burn survivors, including teasing, anger, survivor’s guilt and more. At her March meeting, she talked about “staring,” and how kids could deal with people staring at them when out in public. The joyful and uplifting message had everyone laughing. Patients even shared personal stories with the group, and everyone gathered to eat lunch together afterward. For Page, this was the exact type of atmosphere she hoped to cultivate. She wants to give children a safe space to process their problems and issues. “If I can come here and help these kids in some way, it makes the journey meaningful,” she said.
Keep In Touch
Join our mailing list to stay up to date on everything that's happening at Shriners Children's.