Cooking for Ronald McDonald House Families
Updated: Oct 19, 2019
Every year in SLL, several students volunteer at the Long Beach Ronald McDonald House. The Ronald McDonald House is a nonprofit whose mission is to provide medically supervised housing for the families of children who are currently hospitalized nearby. One of their most fundamental beliefs is that the speedy and comfortable recovery of a child is facilitated by the presence of his or her family. Thus, when a child needs to be housed in a hospital several miles away, families have the opportunity to stay at the Ronald McDonald House free of charge. Although staying at hotel may be an option for some families, others are unable to manage the financial burden, especially considering additional hospital costs. The Ronald McDonald House provides free living facilities equiped with the comforts of home.
Among fulfilling other needs, the Ronald McDonald House also provides free meals to families. Since the organization is a nonprofit, they rely on volunteers to provide this service. SLL happily fills this role on an annual basis. SLL students are responsible for menu planning and budgeting along with the cooking and cleaning duties.
After purchasing groceries and other supplies, Service Learning students cook meals both breakfast and dinner. For breakfast, we provided panckaes, (both plain and blueberry!), fruit, sausage and juice. When dinner time came around, Service Learning prepared vegetarian and beef lasagna, garlic bread, salad, and oatmeal cookies. Both meals were expertly made by our amatuer chefs and were well received by the families at the Ronald McDonald House. Many expressed their sincerest thanks and then proceeded to share their individual stories about why they were currently staying at the facility. After being touched by the personal accounts shared, we were given a tour of the House. We were given a glimpse of the beautifully designed sleeping rooms, entertainment area, and outdoor patio all menat to provide families with comfort and stability during trying times.
Collectively, SLL student agree that the experience was incredibly rewarding. Not only do they have fun preparing the food, but we also enjoy watching the happy faces of the families enjoying the meals. At the end of the day, they are heartened to know that they were making the lives of the families staying at the House just a little bit easier. The Ronald McDonald House makes the difficulty of having a sick child a slightly easier process and we are happy to have been a part of thir mission!