Beer to the Rescue is Back
In 2015, after his diagnosis Brandon decided he needed to do what he could to raise funds for The Lupus Foundation of Southern California. This year marks the third annual “Beer to the Rescue” event. It’s now the largest annual fundraising campaign, featuring more than 40 San Diego County and SoCal brewing companies. These companies are holding events throughout May, which is Lupus Awareness Month—and actually some even started in April.
Over the past two years, this event has raised more than $70,000 for the Lupus Foundation, which provides cost-free support services for people living with lupus in San Diego and Imperial Counties as well as educational programs, grants for lupus research, and more. This year, the Lupus Foundation is using a percentage of funding received through Beer to the Rescue to set up a scholarship program for lupus patients in need of financial assistance for college.
The calendar of events is too long to publish here but you can find the list at BeertotheRescue.org. Places like Bitter Brothers Brewing Co., Societe Brewing Co., Mission Brewery, Iron Fist Brewing Co., and Belching Beaver Brewery will be hosting events. There are even special beers being brewed just for the campaign by Stone Brewing, Green Flash Brewing, Mission Brewing, and several others, with proceeds from their sales being donated to LFSC. Additionally, Rip Current Brewing will host an official kick-off on May 1 and closing event on May 31 at each of its tasting rooms. And Booze Brothers Brewing will contribute 40 percent of sales on Cinco de Mayo. Finally, The Oggi’s chain of Southern California restaurants will make a donation to the LFSC.
Why should you care about this disease? It turns out that in San Diego, Imperial and Riverside Counties alone, there are over 20,000 people suffering from lupus. Studies show one in 185 people have lupus, nine out of 10 of which are women between the ages of 17 and 40. However, these numbers are skewed because most people with lupus are never diagnosed with this autoimmune disease, which negatively impacts victims via myriad painful symptoms, causes irreparable damage to vital organs and can be fatal.
“Lupus is an autoimmune disease for which there is no cure, meaning patients have to live with it,” Brandon told me. “Helping them live with it and lead productive lives is what the LFSC is devoted to, and they wouldn't be able to do nearly as much as they are now without the funds raised via Beer to the Rescue. Speaking from experience, lupus is a cruel and debilitating disease, but having the backing of family, friends and, in this case, world-class brewers, makes life better, easier and a lot more fun.
“Come out to one (or several) of the 40-plus events we have on tap for May,” Brandon said, “and see and taste for yourself!”