Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego reopened its original house Thursday, adding to the number of overnight suites for families with hospitalized children.
The Ronald McDonald “North House” features eight suites, bringing the total number of Ronald McDonald House overnight accomodations to 55.
The North House is about a five-minute walk from the current 47-suite Ronald McDonald House in San Diego, and guests of the North House will have access to all services at the current house, according to a statement from Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego.
The North House is the site of the original San Diego Ronald McDonald House from the 1980s. In 2009, the Ronald McDonald House moved down the street to its current 47-bedroom location, and Rady Children’s Hospital took over the original space for medical offices.
In February 2017, the hospital leased the property to Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego for $1 a year. Since then, a half-million-dollar renovation project has been underway to prepare the North House for families. More than $380,000 was raised in cash donations and approximately $150,000 was donated with in-kind services, according to the statement.
“The North House will reduce the waitlist for overnight beds and provide lodging, meals and emotional support to more families in medical crisis,” said Chuck Day, president and CEO of Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego. “While the North House is a huge victory, we know the need for our services is still strong. We plan to operate this remodeled North House for up to seven years while solidifying a path for long-term expansion, and our hope is to build a larger facility on this site, or at another location nearby.”
“Every night, on average, 30 families who need a room must be placed on a waitlist. The addition of the North House provides eight more suites for families with a critically-ill or injured child in a local hospital, significantly reducing the waitlist,” according to the Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego statement.
Families are scheduled to begin residing in the North House Monday.
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