Located next door to The Children's Hospital at Westmead, Ronald McDonald House Charities Greater Western Sydney (RMHC GWS) provide a warm, safe, home-away-from-home when seriously ill or injured children require specialist care and treatment far from their home towns in regional and rural Australia.
By fundraising for RMHC GWS, you'll help provide valuable family-centered care that plays an important role for families while their child receives treatment. Your support will help to provide much needed financial, emotional and practical support that reduces the stress and costs to families while improving their ability to cope.
After noticing Isabelle had a swollen wrist, her mum Chrystal took her to the emergency department.
Just a few days later, after travelling from West Kempsey to The Children’s Hospital in Westmead, they received the deveasting news that Isabelle had been diagnosed with osteosarcoma (bone cancer).
As part of her ongoing treatment, Isabelle had her fibula removed. Thankfully, her family have been by her side. They have called Ronald McDonald House in Westmead home for over 255 nights when they needed it the most.
"Just having a place to come home to, where there are meals after a long day and activities for the kids...thank you so much" - Isabelle's Mum, Chrystal
Belle has recently returned home to West Kempsey but will continue to come to Westmead for regular check-ups. Although her future as a dancer is unknown, her love for dance continues and she is taking it one physio appointment and one fouetté turn at a time.
By joining Dance for Sick Kids, you're making an everlasting impact on the lives of seriously ill children and their families. Thank you!
A global research team* worked with RMHC to evaluate the impact of our House Program on families around the world. The following is a summary of those findings**.
Access to the best care
Our House Program makes it possible for families who travel long distances, to access the top children’s hospitals around the world.
Stronger mental health
Having a child in hospital can trigger clinical anxiety in parents. Our Houses provide families with the emotional, mental and practical support to better manage their stress, so that they can be more actively involved in the care of their children.
Financial peace of mind
Ongoing medical bills, travel and accommodation costs are a huge source of stress for many families. Our Houses offer accommodation at no cost, close to hospitals, to alleviate some of the burden.
Parents sleep better
Parents who sleep at one of our Houses have a better night’s rest than those that sleep at their child’s hospital bedside. This ensures they have the strength to support their child.
Having family and siblings close by, who are invested in a child’s care, can improve a hospitalised child’s recovery and treatment outcomes.
Positive hospital experience
Families who stay at a Ronald McDonald House find they have a more positive experience of hospital than those that stay elsewhere.
Families cope better
Having family together under one roof, including the support of experienced volunteers and other families, greatly improves a family’s ability to cope with having a child in hospital.
Safe, affordable alternative to hospital
Many high-risk pregnant women who are stable but need to be close to care, can now afford to stay close to care. This is also the case for parents who have a newborn in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).
Siblings cope better
Play is how children interact and make sense of the world. That’s why play areas are such an important part of our offering. They allow siblings to connect and cope more with the stress of a difficult situation.
* The global team of researchers was drawn from leading universities, including the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), George Washington University, the University of Chicago, as well as from top medical centres in Hong Kong; Sydney, Australia; the United Kingdom; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Cincinnati, U.S.; and Toronto, Canada.
** Findings taken from RMHC Impact Research – the name for a suite of studies on the impact of RMHC around the world. The summaries provided here provide a snapshot of the findings from each of the key Ronald McDonald House Impact studies.
Other Ronald McDonald House CHARITIES GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY Programs
Nepean Family Room
Our Family Room is curently located* within the Nepean Hospital, near the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. It provides families a chance to recharge after many stressful hours at their child’s side. The Family Room is equipped with areas to rest, eat, freshen up, play and relax.
The Nepean Family Room is currently closed for renovations and will reopen in the not-too-distant future
Extended stays in hospital or receiving medical treatment means kids miss school. Our tailored one-to-one tuition help kids catch up on schoolwork so that they feel confident as they transition back to school. Our Learning Program also offers professional development for educators. EDMed™ provides teachers with information about the potential impacts of a serious or chronic illness, as well as educational strategies to support the needs of these students impacted by a serious or chronic illness.
Ready to Make Your Move?
If you have any questions about Dance for Sick Kids, or need a hand with anything, please reach out. We’re here to help!