ORLANDO – Finding, creating, and supporting programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children and families is the primary mission of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Florida (RMHCCF).
At the heart of that quest is the organization’s cornerstone program, the Ronald McDonald House, which provides a home-away-from-home for families with children receiving treatment at hospitals and medical facilities in Orlando.
“We meet families in their greatest time of need,” said RMHCCF CEO and President Clay Osburne. “We’re trying to keep families close so when their kids are in our pediatric hospitals here in Orlando they don’t have to go somewhere else. They can be right there on campus with their kids.”
There are three Ronald McDonald Houses in Orlando providing that home-away-from-home experience: on the campus of Orlando Health Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, the campus of AdventHealth for Children, and the campus of Nemours Children’s Health. Each year, close to 2,700 families stay at those locations to be near to their children.
“We believe in family-centered care,” Osburne explained. “We believe when families are together, they heal better, and they heal quicker. We’re providing a spot for families to stay together and be together as they’re going through this tough time.” Ronald McDonald Houses also provide much-needed financial relief for families who need to access pediatric care for their children. The average length of stay in a Ronald McDonald House is ten days and can save families thousands of dollars by providing a place to stay and wraparound services like meals, wifi, and laundry.
The entire McDonald’s system – owners and operators, suppliers, employees, and customers – has helped support families with sick children providing stability and vital resources since the first Ronald McDonald House opened in 1974. McDonald’s support extends from monetary contributions and volunteerism to cause-related marketing promotions and the space to place RMHC Donation Canisters that raise money for chapters around the world.
Financial contributions from Central Florida McDonald’s owners and operators make up approximately 15 percent of their annual budget. The rest of the funding comes from the generosity of individuals, companies, and foundations in the community. “McDonald’s makes up a little bit of our budget, but we’re completely funded by donations and gifts,” said Osburne. “So, we’re dependent on the community and others to help us be there and support us so we can provide the three houses to meet the needs of those families and keep them close.”
Receiving a $30,000 grant from the DeVos Family Foundation as part of their 30 Grants for 30 Years Initiative will do exactly that for RMHCCF. The donation will go toward nights for families at the three Ronald McDonald House …….