Imagine for a moment that you have a sick child who requires surgery, chemotherapy, blood tests, or organ transplants…in a city far away from the one you call home.
You travel to a new place – anxious, exhausted, and with medical bills up to your waist. The last thing you want to think about is checking into an unfamiliar (and expensive) hotel, surrounded by strangers.
The Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern Arizona steps in at times like these and provides a “Home Away from Home” for families who must travel to Tucson for medical care. The 24,000 square foot house at Prince & Campbell has 28 bedrooms with private bathrooms. The home also has welcoming community areas – 4 kitchens, a reading room, a playroom, a laundry room, and a small outdoor play area. At a rate of just $15 per day, families can stay in an intimate and relaxed environment as their child recuperates.
RMHC also operates a Ronald McDonald Family Room at Diamond Children’s Medical Center at the University of Arizona Medical Center. Located just steps away from the neonatal and pediatric intensive care units, the Family Room provides families of hospitalized children an opportunity to refresh, rest, and reflect, without going too far from their children.
Where is the Ronald McDonald House located?
In Central Tucson – only a few miles from the Diamond Children’s Medical Center.
The address is: 3838 N. Campbell Road (just north of Prince), Tucson.
What volunteer opportunities are available?
- Answer telephones
- Greet families and visitors
- Make up rooms so they are ready for new families
- Organize the kitchen
- Organize the playroom
- Store and organize supplies and donations
- Assist with special projects
- Restock linens, kitchen, bathroom, cleaning and other supplies
Family Room Volunteers
- Answer telephones
- Register guests
- Provide orientation and tours to first time guests
- Keep simple statistical records
- Instruct families of the Family Room policies
- Enforce policies when needed
- Offer resources to families
- Keep room neat and tidy
- Help provide a warm, friendly, and supportive atmosphere for families
Chef for a Day
- Get a group of 12 people or less together and log on to the RMHC website to schedule a date and meal.
- Decide what you would like to make and shop for the ingredients.
- Plan a well-rounded meal (main dish and side dishes; beverages and desserts are optional) that will serve 30 people.
- Bring all food items on your scheduled date and prepare the meal in the RMHC kitchen. All pots, pans, utensils, and serving dishes are available on-site for your use.
What are the training requirements?
The first step is to fill out a Volunteer Application – which includes demographic information, education, work experience, and a background check. You will also need to provide two references.
Volunteer shifts are generally 3 hours, but there is flexibility if you cannot commit to a 3-hour shift. That said, RMHC does ask that you commit to volunteer for at least six months.
What if I can’t volunteer my TIME?
- Buy an item on the RMHC wish list. Current items on the list include gallon size ziploc bags, cereal, fresh fruit, AA and AAA batteries, tupperware containers, crock pots, paper towels, and more.
- Donate money. Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern Arizona, a 501(c)(3), is financially supported primarily through tax-deductible contributions from individuals, corporations, and foundations.
- Collect pop tabs. Collect aluminum tabs from soda cans and bring them in to RMHC. 1,600 pop tabs makes one pound. 150 pounds funds one family to stay one night.
Can I volunteer with my children?
Because many of the children in the house may have a low tolerance to germs and bacteria, volunteers must be ages 12 and up. That said, younger kids can certainly participate in the effort by collecting pop tabs and/or organizing a wish list drive.
Who should I contact if I want to become a volunteer?
Send an email to Christine LaBoy at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find out more at http://rmhctucson.org/how-you-can-help/volunteer/.
CONNECT WITH THE RONALD MCDONALD HOUSE
Is the Ronald McDonald House on Facebook and Twitter?
- Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern Arizona on Facebook
- Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern Arizona on Twitter
You can also sign up to receive RMHC’s newsletter (via snail mail or email) to receive updates about events, volunteer opportunities, and pressing needs.