Facts & Statistics
Ronald McDonald House
Many families must travel far from home and spend several weeks or months getting treatment for their seriously ill or injured children, resulting in a long period of family separation. For children facing a serious medical crisis, nothing seems scarier than not having mom and dad close by for love and support. At Ronald McDonald House, we provide a home so families can stay close to their hospitalized child at little to no cost.
Our Houses are built on the simple idea that nothing else should matter when a family is focused on the health of their child – not where they can afford to stay, where they will get their next meal, or where they will lay their head at night to rest. We believe that when a child is hospitalized, the love and support of family is as powerful as the strongest medicine prescribed.
Comforts at the Ronald McDonald House
– Private bedrooms with bathrooms, TVs, cable, and phones
– Home-cooked dinner and breakfast provided daily by volunteers
– Two fully-equipped kitchens with microwaves, refrigerators, and ovens
– Laundry facilities with free washers, dryers, and laundry supplies
– Business center with computer and internet access
– Private pumping room for nursing mothers
– Calm sanctuary in our Butterfly Garden and outdoor serenity patio
– Play area and playground for children
– Entertainment room with video games and movies
– Common areas to read, relax, and find community
– Various family-friendly activities throughout the week
– Free shuttle for families without transportation
Allow Families to Face the Weight of Illness Together
Families are stronger when they are together. By staying at a Ronald McDonald House, parents also can better communicate with their child’s medical team and keep up with complicated treatment plans when needed. They can also focus on the health of their child, rather than grocery shopping, cleaning, or cooking meals.
Allow Children to Get the Best Care
When your child is sick, you want the best care possible – even if it is hundreds or thousands of miles away. The Ronald McDonald House allows families to access specialized medical treatment by providing a place to stay at little or sometimes no cost.How to start
Ronald McDonald Family Room
At UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital
Located adjacent to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, the Ronald McDonald Family Room offers comfort and support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to families with seriously ill children receiving medical care at the hospital.
Staffed by a team of friendly volunteers, the Ronald McDonald Family Room offers the following:
– Private sleep room for naps and overnight stays on a first come basis
– Comfortable chairs to relax
– Small kitchen with snacks, coffee, and water
– Television, telephone, and computer
– Activities for children
Ronald McDonald House Charities of North Central Florida supports families with seriously ill children through our two programs, the Ronald McDonald House and Ronald McDonald Family Room located in UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital.
In 1979, a group of physicians joined together to establish a Ronald McDonald House after seeing a growing need to support the families of seriously ill children at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital in Gainesville, Florida.
After searching for an existing building with no luck, the group decided to build a new House from the ground up. The groundbreaking was held on July 8, 1981, and exactly one year to the day, the Ronald McDonald House of North Central Florida opened its doors. The original House had 18 rooms, was built without the help of a professional sports team, and was the first Ronald McDonald House to be built specifically for caring for families. The House now operates 31 rooms and is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. On average, 1,000 families are served each year not only from Florida’s 67 counties but also from 48 states and 35 countries.
In 2002, Ronald McDonald House Charities of North Central Florida celebrated the opening of the Ronald McDonald Family Room located adjacent to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital. Staffed by a team of friendly volunteers, the Ronald McDonald Family Room offers snacks, coffee, a small kitchen, a private room to sleep and relax, telephone, television, computer, and activities for children. The Ronald McDonald Family Room serves over 10,000 individuals every year.
McDonald’s has been a RMHC Founding Mission Partner since 1974. From the moment the doors opened at the first Ronald McDonald House in Philadelphia, the entire McDonald’s system (owner/operators, suppliers, employees, and customers) has helped us support families with sick children by providing stability and vital resources.
McDonald’s support extends from monetary contributions and volunteerism to cause-related marketing promotions and space to place RMHC donation boxes and round up opportunities that raise money for Chapters around the world. McDonald’s has helped RMHC positively impact millions of children and their families while continuing to provide valuable resources and support to expand our core programs and services.
Although the McDonald’s system is our largest corporate partner, Ronald McDonald House Charities of North Central Florida is a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation, and no one company solely funds the growth of our programs and services. We rely heavily on the support of our entire community and greatly value donations from all of our community and corporate partners.