When your children are sick and in the hospital sometimes all you need is a quiet place to decompress (or cry) for a few minutes. Maybe you just need a place to shower and The Ronald McDonald Family Room at Ogden Regional Medical Center is just that place. It is the first "room" in Utah. Unlike the well known Ronald McDonald Houses, the “Ronald McDonald Family Room” is a day-stay room and does not have sleeping or napping facilities. However, it does offer other amenities such as a library, refreshments and a private meeting room. There are couches, showers and even laundry facilities available for you to use.
The Ronald McDonald Family Rooms are located in local hospitals all over the country. The Houses are located in the towns where there is a Children's Hospital. Both places are constantly looking for people to volunteer and give of their time, talents and sometimes even resources.
They told me about how you can get youth groups, or even Relief Societys to volunteer to come in and make dinner in the homes for the families that are staying their with their sick children. They had a boy who was trying to get his Eagle Scout Project contact them about what he could do for an Eagle Project. They gave him some suggestions and he ended up building an amazing spice rack for them to put in their kitchen.
The Family Rooms are always looking for people to purchase Single Serving T.V dinners and donate them to the rooms. They need your used books, gently used toys and even unwanted DVD's.
It struck me, as I was touring this amazing facility, how easy it would be for us to serve this organization. All we needed to do is when we go grocery shopping pick up a box of Hot Pockets or a few single serve TV dinners and then deliver them. How easy is that?
While I was there, I watched a tired, sad looking Mother bring her other children into the room, sit them down in front of the computers and TV while she rummaged through the frigde for something to make for them to eat. My heart hurt for her as I realized that the medical bills were probably draining her resources and what a blessing this Room from the Ronald McDonald Organization was for her-- even if it was just to find something to feed her other children and have small break.
When your children or even yourself is trying to find a way to offer service or you need ideas for those Eagle Scout or Laurel Projects, don't forget your local Ronald McDonald Houses or Rooms. They always have lists of things for you to do or donate.