5 Simple Ways You Can Lean in For Families with Sick Children

CEO Laura Boudreau shares what leaning in to service means to her.   

Parents with sick children can’t wait until the right time to access care; they have to lean in for their children.

“For me, leaning in is about facing challenges head-on and finding opportunity in every obstacle,” shared Laura Boudreau, CEO of Ronald McDonald House Charities Bay Area.

Families with sick kids have no choice but to lean in to ensure their child gets the best care possible. For families like Miracle’s, this means they also need to care for their patient’s siblings. When a family faces medical crisis, their daily lives change in an instant. Housing, financial security, mental health, and access to meals all come into question. Ronald McDonald House Charities Bay Area provides comfort and support to families when and where they need it most, so they can focus on what matters— caring for their sick child.

At Ronald McDonald House Charities Bay Area, our team understands the importance of holistic care for families with sick children. From our frontline workers to our board members, we get involved and lean in to serve families. RMHC Bay Area board president Heather Pietsch explained, “I chose to get involved because I saw firsthand a family struggling to save the life of their child.”

There are many ways you can lean in and impact families — from hosting a fundraiser to rally your community to making a holiday donation to collecting toys and need items for families at the hospital —you can make a difference for families with sick children. Get involved and lean in to service today.

< Listen to Heather Pietsch share why she serves at RMHC Bay Area.

5 Simple Ways You Can Lean in For Families with Sick Children

1. Start a Fundraiser

Make your donation go even further by raising awareness. Start a virtual or in-person fundraiser to bring your friends and family together to support Ronald McDonald House families and their greatest needs. Provide a way for your network to contribute by hosting a fundraiser.

2. Donate Care Kits

Families spend countless hours in the hospital, at appointments, and caring for their child. Care kits provide parents with necessities that help them get through each day. You can stock care kits with toiletries, non-perishable and individually wrapped snacks, activity books, and more.

3. Cook a Special Holiday Meal

How does it work?

  • Choose a group of up to eight colleagues, friends, or family members to participate.
  • Reserve a megaBITES meal date; lunch and dinner options are available, Tuesday through Thursday, at Ronald McDonald House at Stanford.
  • Donate $1,200 to cover meal costs.
  • Our staff creates a nutritious and delicious menu, does the shopping, and guides your group through meal preparation, service, and clean-up.
  • Your team will fund, prepare, and serve 150 hot, nutritious meals for Ronald McDonald House families, so they have one less thing to worry about during long days at the hospital.

4. Make an Immediate Impact

Donating online is the fastest and most direct way to make an immediate impact. Our secure site allows you to donate in various ways, including setting up a sustaining monthly contribution.

5. Check Out Our Wish Lists

Many times, the simplest way to help is to bring a smile to the faces of families with sick children. To find out what you can send, please see our most needed toys and care items on our Amazon and Target wish lists.

Donors Like You Make an Impact

23,832 overnight stays

nearby and inside the hospital

$11,081,880 worth of supportive housing services

for families with sick children

2,000 hours

of psychosocial support

3,175 snack packs

delivered to families at the hospital

95,897 free meals

offsetting $1.4 million in meal expenses

92,626 pounds of food

distributed thanks to our Second Harvest food bank partnership

4,000 toys and care items

donated for Comfort & Joy with an estimated value of $88,000

90 students enrolled

in hybrid Ronald McDonald House School (Carter Family Classroom)

Families We Serve