Community Involvement 2020 | 3 min read
2020 has brought many challenges and uncertainties that have impacted whole communities across the globe. It has highlighted the importance of prioritizing loved ones, appreciating personal health, and learning to adapt to uncontrollable situations.
These experiences are-all-too familiar for children that have serious, often life-threatening conditions. The tribulations that young patients and their families face, is what inspired the Ronald McDonald House Charities to create a “home-away-from-home”.
[Pictured: Ronald McDonald House of San Diego]
Since 1974, Ronald McDonald House has sought to support families with critically ill or injured children through a number of ways. One of their original services has been providing bed and breakfast to families that spend extensive hours at the hospital. As pediatric medicine requires parents to be present during treatments, most family members don’t have an opportunity to eat, sleep, and rest in between appointments. Thus, this housing option has enabled patients to receive necessary, long-term treatments. Over the years, the House has expanded efforts by providing Family Care Centers and onsite school facilities for healthy siblings. Wherever there’s a Ronald McDonald House, residents can rest assured that there will be support throughout treatment and recovery processes.
[Pictured: Interfaith Chapel at Family Care Center]
The San Diego sector of RMHCSD, in particular, houses over 1,100 families during their child’s treatment and supports an additional 12,000 family members with their Family Care Center. They have also partnered with local school districts to provide virtual school services known as, “School Away from School”, which gives patients and siblings the opportunity to learn and grow during their stay. Inspired by love and committed to helping others, the mission of RMHCSD deeply resonates with the VESSEL team. It was a no-brainer to partner with another San Diego-based company that shared the core value of giving back to the community.
[Pictured: Padres Playroom]
Together, RMHCSD and VESSEL provided school backpacks and supplies for patients and siblings. One hundred backpacks were donated through VESSEL’s Buy a Bag, Give a Bag initiative and later filled with essential school supplies through RMHCSD’s Fill the Backpack campaign. All backpacks were stuffed with pencils, spiral notebooks, colored pencils, child-safe scissors, and more! These were not only a refreshing surprise for the patients and siblings, but much-needed tools to aid their learning.
[Pictured: Two students attending School Away from School with their VESSEL backpacks]
To learn more about RMHCSD’s free education and enrichment programs, click here: https://rmhcsd.org/services/education-enrichment/
All image permissions granted by Ronald McDonald House of San Diego.