Home Away from Home: Ronald McDonald House of Durham

For 34 years, the Ronald McDonald House of Durham has been providing a home away from home for families with seriously ill children. Their vision is to offer love, share comfort, inspire community and sustain hope by giving families a place to stay when their child is being treated in a nearby hospital. Accommodating Families in Need When a family travels more than 50 miles from home to obtain treatment for their child, they are eligible to stay at the House. For a suggested $10-15 per night, a family can stay in a bedroom with amenities similar to a hotel room, but families are never turned away for their inability to pay. All families have access to a fully equipped communal kitchen, dining area, living room and laundry facility. There is also a chapel, learning center, computer room and library on site. Having these resources is important in meeting the needs of a family who has to spend several weeks or months away from home. The Ronald McDonald House also sponsors family rooms at Duke University Hospital and WakeMed Children’s Hospital so families can get away to relax, have a meal or check email without having to leave the hospital grounds. The Ronald McDonald House of Durham anticipates hosting more than 1,300 families in the house and 40,000 visits to the family rooms in the coming year. They rely on the support of the community and volunteers to help meet the needs of these families. Holly Hutchinson, community outreach manager for the Ronald McDonald House of Durham, explains: Volunteers provide a clean place to relax, activity nights, and home cooked meals....