Berkeley Public Health Alumna Serves Children and Families in Need

Article by UC Berkeley Public Health Alumni Association, Fall 2020

UC Berkeley School of Public Health alumna Laura Boudreau has always known she wanted to work directly with people rather than focusing on academic research. That’s why she prizes her role as chief executive officer of the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) Bay Area.

Boudreau graduated from UC Berkeley in 1998 with an MSW/MPH in social work and public health. The dual-degree program allowed her to explore a combination of disciplines alongside students from various walks of life, all of which fuels her work.

Ronald McDonald House—an independent nonprofit with hundreds of chapters across the world— serves families with critically ill children who are receiving local hospital care by providing them with overnight accommodations and other resources, including nightly family meals, fitness facilities, cooking classes, on-site schools, and a psychological support program. The program prioritizes families who need to travel long distances for treatment, and especially those of children who are waiting for transplants or cancer treatments which can mean months of hospitalization.

“The idea is to create an entire community for families away from home, sometimes for a year at a time, while their children are being treated at the hospital,” Boudreau says.

Boudreau started working with the Ronald McDonald House at Stanford’s Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital eight year ago. That house eventually merged with the San Francisco RMHC chapter; Boudreau’s team now serves the entire Bay Area. She was just appointed CEO in April of this year… Read the full article here at UC Berkeley Public Health