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Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Ohio Valley Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, Patient & Family Support

Mission: The mission of Ronald McDonald House Charities is to create, find and support programs that directly improve the health and well being of children. Our mission is driven by the belief that no child should endure hospitalization without their family by their side and no family should have to endure this very stressful time without the comforts of home. Our House program is the core of our mission. A hospital's priority is treatment for the patient -- our priority is meeting the needs of their family. Many families say if not for the Ronald McDonald House, they would've slept in their car or in the hospital waiting room. By providing tired, scared, and overwhelmed parents a comfortable bed, warm shower, and hot meals while being just steps away from their critically-ill child, we believe we are helping families heal together.

Results: Our charity serves families from throughout the Ohio River Valley and beyond. Our primary counties include Edwards, Wabash, Wayne and White in Illinois; Daviess, Dubois, Gibson, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh and Warrick in Indiana; and Daviess, Hancock, Henderson, Hopkins, McLean, Muhlenberg, Ohio, Union and Webster in Kentucky. The population we serve is parents/caregivers who live 15 miles or more from our house with a child 21 years old and younger who is hospitalized or undergoing short- and long-term medical therapies. In the ten years since our Washington Avenue House opened, we have served over 2,000 families whose total stays were over 24,000 nights and averaged 7 to 14 nights each. We have served over 100 families with an average stay of 14 nights at our Gateway House since it opened in October 2019.

Target demographics: Parents of critically ill children hospitalized or receiving medical treatment in the Metropolitan Evansville area

Direct beneficiaries per year: Over 1,000 families

Geographic areas served: Southeastern Illinois, Southwestern Indiana and Western Kentucky

Programs: Ronald McDonald House: Our “home away from home” provides shelter and comfort to families who must travel to our community in order to receive medical treatment for their child. Families are stronger when they are together, and their presence helps a sick child heal faster and cope better. While we cannot make medicine taste better or take away painful treatments, we can help lessen the burden and ensure families have the stability and resources they need.

Community Stories

21 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Judi H.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House of the Ohio Valley. I have had my eyes opened to the large number of premature babies as well as ill children that live in our tri-state area. Families of these children find comfort and caring at our RMHC. Lodging, food, play areas, and plenty of caring are found within these walls. Thanks to all of our community for their support and monetary contributions!

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a volunteer, I have realized the importance of keeping parents close to their ill children. Parents are able to live at the RMHC, within minutes to their child. Stress is taken off the parents: a beautiful bedroom to retreat to, meals ready to nourish them, a pantry full of groceries to be used by the residents, staff and volunteers ready to listen to stories about their child's care, and share pictures of their precious child!
The following is a sample of some of my experiences at our RMHC.
1. I have seen children who were once unable to eat solid foods, grow and nourish their tiny bodies with everyday foods, because of the feeding clinic.
2. Parents who were distraught over birth of a very premie baby, share their emotions of the birth and feel relief as volunteers listen.
3.Emotionally drained parents of teenage drivers who were badly hurt in car accidents, let tears flow as they register for a room.
4. Special celebrations by parents, staff, and volunteers for birthdays, daily achievements, and the big day to return to their home!
5. I have been amazed by the willingness of people to serve meals to our residents. They come from not only Evansville, but a far away as Kentucky and Illinois! Church groups, college groups, Brownies, Barbeque Pros, local restaurants, and just dedicated friends. They all gather to serve others! Such a Blessing!
THERE IS NO PLACE LIKE THE RMHC OF THE OHIO VALLEY!

Christan Lavann M.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I'm rather upset at someone's post here. First off, there's always ALWAYS a refrigerator in the kitchen that has "community" food. Even for the people who do not have a room there. And while our particular room didn't look like the one pictured, it was extremely nice and cozy. The bed there was THE most comfortable bed I'd ever slept in EVER! I cannot speak for the other post but I didn't see every single room, as I doubt they did either. And of course they asked us to keep our rooms clean!! They're certainly not a motel! That's not too much to ask of any adult staying there! Every single volunteer helped us and was pleasant and so encouraging! Also, yes they asked us to "sign in/out" so if the NICU called they'd know if we were in our room! They gave so much for us. They served us in a way no one else did or even offered to do. I was able to be with my daughter the month she was in the NICU....my youngest son was able to stay whenever and my husband came and went to work as he needed. I breastfed every 3 hours and was in and out ALL hours of the day and night. They even provided me with a breastpump and a mini fridge in my room to store my milk! There were rules of course and we were able to buy and cook our own food. Never were we turned away from a meal or a shower or the ability to wash clothes. They were most kind and such a blessing from God. My family is so very thankful! Thank you RMHC! ❤

Review from Guidestar

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Being a volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House in Evansville has been a wonderful experience for me. The house itself is so warm and inviting, and the staff is so caring and compassionate. Being able to provide some level of comfort for families going through a difficult time is very gratifying. I truly believe I receive more than I give.

2 Lynn P.3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Ronald McDonald House in Evansville has a beautiful facility and a beautiful spirit!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering at Ronald McDonald House almost six years ago and love it. I enjoy working with the other volunteers and staff members. Staff members are always available if you need help, just a phone call away. They are very understanding and I feel like I can always ask them for help. The volunteers on my shift all work closely together and help each other when needed. The guests who stay at the house appreciate that you are helping them. It makes me feel good knowing I am helping someone. We have quite a few volunteers, but you don't get lost in the crowd. It's a great place to volunteer.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House for the past 5 years I can tell you that it is truly a wonderful home away from home for families with sick babies. This house provides these families all of the modern conveniences of home and a nice, safe place to lay their heads at night so that all of their attention/focus can be on their baby during this typically otherwise difficult time in their lives.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ronald McDonald House provides a much needed resource for families with sick children. The volunteers are always very helpful to the families that stay there. Some of the families have to make recurring visits to the hospital and have stayed at Ronald McDonald House multiple times. The families and volunteers get to know each other and the volunteers follow the progress of the children. I know it makes you feel like you accomplished something good when members of a family show up at the House after what has probably been a very rough day and you get them checked into a room for a night (or longer). The family can try to relax and rest and don't have to worry about where to stay or where to eat. A lot of the families come back to visit the House and say hello even after their children are better.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It’s such a blessing to see all the families that have come thru the house. The impact the house and kindness from the volunteers and staff have really affected the families. We are a “home away from home family” to our guests.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had a grand daughter that was treated at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore several years ago. They did not have a Ronald McDonald house there, but something similar. This is what inspired me to volunteer in my home town.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband and I had to spend a month in Evansville due to our son being born prematurely and was in the NICU. A room opened at the Ronald McDonald house and the social worker at the hospital referred us. We were told there would always be hot meals, cozy environment, etc. We arrived that evening cold, tired and hungry. We were informed there was no dinner. We asked about breakfast and informed there was no breakfast offered..only if we food shopped and cooked it ourselves. We were handed cleaning supplies and told we had to clean our room every other day and that they reserve the right to come in and make sure we are doing this..that is an invasion of privacy. We were also told that we could not be in the room at all during the day..my husband works remotely..how could he do that if we could not be in the room during the day? We have to sign in and out when we leave? Also the pictures of the rooms displayed here are NOT what they look like. This was more like a halfway house. I respect what this program does and think it's a wonderful thing, but it is falsely marketed. We were not told that there is only food if a certain group prepares it. We did meet other parents in the NICU who had similar issues with Ronald McDonald house. I would recommend being honest with people and removing some of the ridiculous rules. The people staying there are adults with sick children and should be treated like adults rather than kids at summer camp. Very disappointing.

3 Tony27

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In the past my wife and I have been volunteers with a multitude of organizations. Without a doubt our two years with Ronald McDonald House have been the most satisfying and rewarding as we help clean the home as "floaters". Seeing how appreciative our guests are and being hosts for them, interacting with them is instant gratification to us. Our home away from home is vital to all who stay here. A definite asset to the local hospitals and our families who come from all over the Country! We frequently have guests share their feelings - of gratitude and the warmth of obvious love they feel from the staff and volunteers. We enjoy interacting with the children- an extra bonus while helping clean!

Tony and Mary Bitter

2 Deb_19

Client Served

Rating: 5

My second daughter was born 3hrs away from home. It was a scary time for us. knowing there was a Ronald McDonald house just across the road from the hospital took some of our worries away. She was in the NICU for three months and had went through 4 surgeries. We could not have paid to stay in a hotel for 3 months. Our medical bills alone were astronomical my husband missed a lot of work when she had her surgeries and procedures done plus travel. Parents with sick children are so blessed to have the Ronald McDonald houses in the area to stay at while they are away from home.
Since being home now, my daughter is now 8 and we have a more local RMH we are able to give back and donate our time once a month.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a volunteer at RMH Charities of the Ohio Valley for close to a year now and really enjoy it. The house staff and fellow volunteers are a great team with which to work. I feel like we are providing a lot of help to families at a difficult time in their lives and glad that I can be a part of it.

1 Tracy50

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered at RMH for over 2 yrs and love everything about it. The house staff along with the other volunteers far exceed any expectations of our guests.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The RMH Charities of the Ohio Valley is a valuable asset to our community. It is especially valuable to families who need a place to stay to be close to their children with critical needs. I have been told many times by these families that if the house was not available to them that they would have been forced to sleep in their cars to be near the hospital. It is wonderful that they have access to a "home away from home" to allow them to get "home cooked" meals and some such needed rest.

I have met and worked with so many wonderful volunteers at the house. Some volunteer because they too needed to stay at a RMH and this is their way of giving back. Others simply want to "give back" to others to acknowledge having received "gifts" in their own life. I am impressed with the number of young people from the community who want to be involved in helping this non-profit organization.

1

Donor

Rating: 4

Wonderful place that does great work. We are very lucky to have this service in our area.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I think it is great to have this free service for families with children that are receiving medical care and need a place to stay and support this is in this area. We live in a rural area and there isn't any other place like it within a 4 hour drive.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ronald McDonald House gives us an opportunity to give back to our community. I thought when I first started to volunteer that I would feel good about that. However, I didn't know that the people we serve there give as much back to me as I feel I give to them. It's a place that works it's way into your heart and makes you want to give more. The Staff and the volunteers are wonderful caring people who it is an honor to work with.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Ronald McDonald House of Evansville is such a wonderful place. I had never known what the RMH was all about until our family needed and received their services. It was such a blessing that I was able to stay so close to my baby while she needed NICU care. We had a nice place to stay, food to eat, our children had rooms and a playground to use, it really saved us some from having extra stress. The RMH has such wonderful staff and volunteers who help make families feel welcomed and cared about during difficult times. A true blessing for families.

1 Anna50

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Ronald McDonald House in Evansville, IN has been both an opportunity and blessing for our family. Without it, NICU families from the tri-state area wouldn't have a place to stay when they can't be at the NICU. Families from all over the country (like ours) use the RMH when our kids are in the terrific feeding clinic at St. Mary's (the local/associated hospital). Many of us are there for weeks (even months) at a time, which simply wouldn't be possible without RMH.

The staff and volunteers at the house make it a true home for us. Everything from the kids' playrooms, beautifully decorated bedrooms, the playground, etc. to the volunteer-provided meals help make the time away from home better. They take the time to get to know us, remember each family's special needs, and go out of their way to make us feel like family.