The Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation (AARBF), in partnership with Pyramid Educational Consultants, developed the N.I.C.K. (Neurotypical/diverse Independent Communication Kit) for Fire and Burn Safety, to bring fire and burn safety education to individuals with autism spectrum disorder, developmental disabilities, intellectual disabilities, and communication challenges. The program can also be used with pre-school children and early readers to enhance comprehension.

Inspired by Jacqueline Laurita, mother of a son with autism, Nicholas, the goal of the N.I.C.K. for Fire and Burn Safety program is to provide life-saving lessons and burn prevention education to learners with special needs, who are more vulnerable to preventable exposure to danger and are at higher risk for burn injuries. Utilizing the safety messages from AARBF’s “Firefighters in Safety Education” program, the N.I.C.K. Fire and Burn Safety program incorporates a fire and burn prevention picture set from Pyramid’s Pics for PECS images that can be used for expressive communication via the Picture Exchange Communication System® (PECS®) protocol, receptive communication via picture direction following as well as within visual stories and life lessons to help learners understand fire and burn safety. Life-saving safety messages, including get low and go; stop drop and roll; and cool a burn for 5 minutes, will now be possible to more effectively teach special needs learners throughout the world thanks to this partnership between AARBF and Pyramid Educational Consultants.