Ronald McDonald House

Today I received a request to ship an item to a little girl in the hospital instead of the home address. It was actually a request to send it to the Ronald McDonald house where they are staying. My mind fills with memories at just the suggestion of one. Have you ever been inside? When you are exhausted, worried, scared.....it is wonderful to know that they are there. I have spent many nights there over the years when my son needs care. He sees a doctor in Iowa. We are in Arkansas. The map says that is a 9 1/2 hour drive. I have never made it in less than 11. You have to stop for gas, food etc.  By the time I travel 11 hours in one day I am so happy to see that place. For about $20 I have a safe, warm, clean place to stay. There is a library full of kids books, a playroom, & often volunteers serve a  warm meal. If not there is a kitchen to cook in. We spend the night, see the doctor the next morning, and make the drive home. We are the lucky ones. There are some who stay for weeks, or even months if it is a diagnosis like cancer. The hotels in the area are all over $100. When my son was little & his healthcare journey first started we once had to stay for a month. No way I could have paid a $3000 hotel bill on top of all of the medical bills.

If you have one in your area, consider donating your time, resources, or supplies. It isn't just a free ride charity, it isn't for those looking for handouts. It is like a discount hotel for those who need a place to stay while they get treatments, or while a loved one is in the hospital away from home. While you are there you are expected to help clean your room and help in the common areas too. It is like a big family environment.  One I am so thankful for.

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