Mission: To provide support and lodging for families of children being evaluated or treated for cancer, cystic fibrosis, hemophilia, renal failure, or other serious illness or injuries requiring treatment.
Programs: Ronald mcdonald house charities of southern arizona owns and operates a 28 bedroom house located in tucson, arizona that provides temporary housing for families of seriously ill children who must leave their communities to seek medical care for their children. The house serves children receiving treatment at banner university medical center, tucson medical center, st. Joseph's hospital, and other treatment facilities in the tucson area. In 2014, 440 families stayed at the ronald mcdonald house for a total of 3,659 "family nights". Families of seriously ill children age 21 and under are eligible to stay at the ronald mcdonald house. They must be referred to the house by a social worker, nurse, doctor, or other medical personnel and be undergoing inpatient or outpatient care. We ask a nominal donation of 15 per night per family, which only partly defrays operating costs. However, no eligible family is ever turned away for inability to give this nominal donation. The house is also an approved lodging facility for families covered by the arizona medicaid program (ahcccs). The house is operated with 6 full-time and 8 part-time staff. A pool of volunteers assists with the day-to-day operations by providing office assistance, light housekeeping, and simple maintenance jobs. For 2014 the ronald mcdonald house in tucson had approximately 100 volunteers who donated nearly 6,000 hours of their time, helping to provide a safe and welcoming "home away from home" for the families. In addition there were over 1,200 volunteers who helped with preparing meals for the resident families and assisted at special fundraising events.
the ronald mcdonald family room at diamond children's medical center is an extension of the services ronald mcdonald house of southern arizona provides. The family room serves all pediatric in-patient families at the children's medical center. It is a special place within the hospital, near the intensive care units, where families can relax and "get away" while still being close to their child. During 2014 we saw 7,755 visits to the family room. Family room volunteers staff the room, uphold all family room and hospital policies and are supportive to the families who use the room. In 2014 we had 40 volunteers who donated approximately 2,200 hours of their time. We also started a new program at the dcmc called the caring cart. The caring cart is a mobile information source within the diamond children's center. Caring cart volunteers visit the patients' rooms with snacks, a small toy, and information about the services available at the family room and the ronald mcdonald house. Sum of = 1,340 volunteers
I doubt that I will have another position in my career that will impact me as deeply as my work at RMHC did. The impact that Ronald McDonald House programs have on sick kids and their families is truly remarkable. For every sad day, every loss, every setback, there is a successful treatment, a triumph, a survival. Seeing what children and their families are capable of was an inspiration that I will carry with me throughout my life. I am so thankful for the opportunity to have done my part to help them in their time of need.
The staff, the volunteers, and the Board are all amazingly dedicated and loving people who truly dedicate every day to the aid and support of the children they serve.
I strongly encourage others to get involved at Tucson's Ronald McDonald House. It is sure to be a life-changing experience!