Posted by Bill Selzer on Jan 30, 2023

This Winter, John Cormana presented to the Elmbrook Rotary Club (ERC) an update on the growth, services and volunteer opportunities at the Ronald McDonald House. A volunteer since 2011, John shared stories of how volunteer services have provided families with comfort during challenging time in their lives. “We are just there to minimize the families worries.” John stated. 

The Ronald McDonald House provides a no cost, clean, & safe place to stay while their child receives treatment. Families receive lodging and meals when a child is in the hospital. This provides parents the ability to focus their full attention on their child. “Hope in healing is provided through strength and support from families, staff, and volunteers. By keeping families together, stories are shared, and memories are made”. Since 1984, over 50,000 families have benefitted from the Ronald McDonald House. 

Over the years the House has expanded through major renovations, from under 30 rooms to 70 and other amenities, i.e. a family room area where families can spend the day while their child is receiving outpatient therapy at Rogers Memorial Hospital in Oconomowoc.

Serving Wisconsin and beyond, this RMHC provides pet, music, and art therapy, along with family garden education and Kids Can Cook programs. A stocked hospitality cart is even wheeled through the halls of the hospital, providing nourishment to the patients and families.

Financial support is provided by the following:

· Pop Tab Program – 400K of recycled tabs per year

· Annual Golf Event – held each year at the Ironwood Golf Course in Sussex

· Annual Gala – Guests enjoy passed hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, and a large silent auction before heading into the main ballroom for a delicious dinner. Guest speakers, including past guest families, share what the House means to them and how others can support the RMHC® mission.

· Coin Boxes at 30 Local McDonald restaurants – 150-200K annually

· Chefs Dinner – provides delectable dishes from around the world by six local chefs.

· Third Party Events – local groups or individuals provide some sort of fundraising event.

Since the pandemic the volunteer staff has diminished from 550 down to 330. Rebuilding the volunteer staff is a current mission.

Available Volunteer Opportunities

· Family Room Volunteers help to create a warm welcoming environment.

· Hospitality Volunteers perform light housekeeping, organizational duties, welcoming guests and assisting with check-outs.

· Kitchen Keeper Volunteers ensure the kitchens are clean, well-organized, and stocked.

· Office Assistance Volunteers answer phones, greet and welcome guests, and office work.

· Van Driver Volunteers transport guests to and from the hospital, grocery stores and other local errands.

If you are interested in supporting the Ronald McDonald House through one or more of their volunteer programs, or just want to learn more about this great place, login to to view the opportunities and sign-up to serve families in need during a difficult time.