La Casa Ronald McDonald
|Ronald McDonald House
Located off of Bayou Blvd, next to Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola sits a brand-new two-story building that houses families while their children are seeking medical help. This building is the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Florida, completed in August 2010, and their mission is to be the best home-away-from-home.
Families from across the country have stayed at the RMH while their children received medical care.
“We are a place where families stay when they have a child receiving treatment in the Pensacola area but they don’t necessarily live right in Pensacola or they may not have access to transportation,” Development Director Angie Hanson said. “A lot of the families that we serve are from Bay County and Okaloosa County, but we serve families from all over the country. We’re lucky enough to have great pediatric specialists in Pensacola.”
In August, an El Salvadorian family from Ft. Walton stayed at the RMH while their baby was treated for digestive issues.
“It was the dad and sibling who stayed, the mom stayed at the hospital,” Director of Family Services and House Operations Shannon Krupa said. “They used the playroom a lot, and were here to have a place to sleep and eat.”
When the families arrive, they are given their own bedroom with a bathroom and they have access to all the common areas, such as the kitchen, family room, fully-stocked laundry room and playground.
“Every evening meal is provided to the families,” Hanson said. “We have different volunteers who sign-up on our calendar and they either come and cook the evening meals or they cook it at home and bring it in here.”
RMH survives off of donations and volunteers.
“Volunteers do a lot around here,” Hanson said. “From answering the phones at the desk, helping us clean up and bake cookies, help with scrapbooking, help with planning events. If someone has a talent or interest, we can probably make use of it.”
For more information about RMH, call 850-477-2273 or visit www.rmhc-nwfl.org.