Day 20 — Ronald McDonald House
A place for families of sick children to call home
I’ve had the privilege of spending time at the Ronald McDonald House in Durham several times. It is a place that is, at times, both overwhelmingly sad and overwhelmingly hopeful. Luckily, the hope is always more powerful than the sad, and the smiles far outweigh the tears.
Colorful walls, messages of hope on chalkboards and hand painted ceiling tiles created by its residents make Ronald McDonald Houses inviting places to call home for families who are busy fighting for their child’s life. Ronald McDonald Houses welcomes families who have traveled to the area to seek medical treatment for their children. They can stay for as long as they need, at little to no cost.
As parents, we all know there is nowhere else we want to be than by the side of our sick child. Imagine having to be in another state for prolonged periods of time as your child seeks treatment. Having a home base, a place to make your own, that is not a hospital room helps to give these families a sense of normalcy, when often their lives have been turned upside-down.
I wasn’t able to get to Ronald McDonald House today but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t still do something to help them. I made a donation when I was in the drive-thru at McDonalds this evening. I’ve seen the signs and collection area many times, but I’ve never paid it much attention. Today I was happy to both notice it and contribute.
I sincerely hope that one day we won’t have need for a place like this. Until that day arrives, and children no longer must battle horrible diseases, I am extremely grateful Ronald McDonald Houses are available to embrace families when they are in the darkest of moments, and surround them with the love and support you can only get from a family.
The website reminds us that the mission of Ronald McDonald Houses is:
"A child fighting a serious illness shouldn’t have to be alone. Mom and dad are needed close by for the love and comfort that only they can give. Join our community of love and help provide care and resources needed when caring for a sick child."
Learn more about the reason behind Maureen's 43 days of kindness blog idea here.