Ronald McDonald House a success

So far 58 families have stayed at Ronald McDonald House Central Alberta since it opened at the end of February. The $12-million Red Deer facility, with 11 suites, provides affordable accommodations for children and their families who live outside the city and are receiving treatment at Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre.

So far 58 families have stayed at Ronald McDonald House Central Alberta since it opened at the end of February.

The $12-million Red Deer facility, with 11 suites, provides affordable accommodations for children and their families who live outside the city and are receiving treatment at Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre.

“We haven’t been to the point where we’ve been completely full yet. We’ve been close a number of times,” said Larry Mathieson, executive director of Ronald McDonald House for Southern Alberta and Central Alberta, on Tuesday.

“It’s been tremendously successful. We’re thrilled to be serving families and be able to be there for families.”

The average length of stay for families is nine to 11 days.

As expected, the majority of families have babies in the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit.

Mathieson said it always takes a while for word to spread to families with children on other hospital wards.

Last week, seven families at the house were from Central Alberta communities. A family from Calgary and a family from Edmonton were also there, likely accessing neonatal beds, he said.

Between 365 and 400 families a year are expected to sleep at the house.

Day passes are also being given out by hospital social workers and nurses to Red Deer families with children in hospital to use the house for a break or a meal.

So far 18 dinners for families have been prepared and funded by people in the community or from businesses.

The community and corporate sponsors helped raise millions to build the house.

As of April 31, a little over 50 per cent of the annual $1.1 million operations budget has been raised.

“There’s not a lot of weeks that a group doesn’t do some kind of fundraiser for us. That’s continued to be a great support,” Mathieson said.

Right now Ronald McDonald House would gladly accept donations of infant and baby toys. They can be dropped off at the house located at 5002 39th St. near Red Deer Regional Hospital.

szielinski@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Castor man dies in crash

Thursday morning collision on Hwy 12

More than $25k raised for Red Deer firefighter who is recovering in hospital

‘I think the support he’s getting is because of the person he is’

Lacombe backs Blackfalds stormwater plan

Stormwater management plan will open up more land for development in Blackfalds

Two men facing charges in alleged abduction

RCMP issued alert for woman on Wednesday morning who was found safe later that day

WATCH: Two weeks away from Canadian Finals Rodeo in Red Deer

In just two weeks, Ponoka’s Shayna Weir will compete with the best… Continue reading

Hi Mickey, ‘Bye Mickey: 6 Disney parks on 2 coasts in 1 day

ORLANDO, Fla. — Heather and Clark Ensminger breathed sighs of relief when… Continue reading

Court weighs ‘Apprentice’ hopeful’s suit versus Trump

NEW YORK — President Donald Trump’s lawyers hope to persuade an appeals… Continue reading

StarKist admits fixing tuna prices, faces $100 million fine

SAN FRANCISCO — StarKist Co. agreed to plead guilty to a felony… Continue reading

Annual pace of inflation slows to 2.2 per cent in September: Statistics Canada

OTTAWA — The annual pace of inflation slowed more than expected in… Continue reading

Jury finds Calgary couple guilty in 2013 death of toddler son

CALGARY — A jury has convicted a Calgary couple in the death… Continue reading

Study of U.S. hospital figures links pot use with increased risk of stroke

MONTREAL — New research is being presented at a conference in Montreal… Continue reading

Leon Draisaitl has overtime winner as Edmonton Oilers down Boston Bruins 3-2

EDMONTON — Connor McDavid set up Leon Draisaitl for the overtime winner… Continue reading

Edmonton girl guide sells out of cookies in front of cannabis store on first day

EDMONTON — She’s being called one smart cookie. As people lined up… Continue reading

Most Read