About Our House
Ronald McDonald House Charities of West Georgia – “Keeping Families Close”.
Ronald McDonald House Charities of West Georgia, Inc. is a charitable organization that owns and operates a Ronald McDonald House in Columbus, Georgia and the soon to be opened Ronald McDonald Family Room at the Midtown Medical Center in its new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. The mission of this charitable organization is to serve the needs of families who have traveled to Columbus, Georgia for the medical treatment of their child or children at one of our area’s medical facilities.
The effort to establish the Ronald McDonald House in Columbus, GA was begun by a group of concerned citizens in early 1991. A significant medical need was demonstrated in a survey of pediatric health care institutions and agencies. Fundraising efforts and a search for the property were started immediately and the ground was broken in September of 1993. Support to make this dream a reality came from a variety of sources; corporate support, individual gifts, fundraising events, recycling programs and donations of building supplies, labor, furniture, and services.
The Ronald McDonald House was built on the simple notion that every family deserves to be close to their child during medical treatment and that no family with a child in the hospital should have to worry about where they will stay. The Ronald McDonald House provides temporary lodging, meals, transportation, laundry, and other services and amenities to families of child patients for the duration of their child’s treatment. The majority of the families who stay at our Ronald McDonald House have a pre-term infant (or multiple infants) in the Midtown Medical Center NICU. Many other families have traveled to Columbus to be with their child during their hospital stay for the treatment of critical illnesses or injuries. We take care of the family members so that they can be close to their child at a time when it is needed most.
All families who are admitted to the Ronald McDonald House are referred directly to RMHC of West Georgia by their case manager or social worker at the referring hospital facility, and all adult family members are subjected to a background check prior to admission for the safety and security of our families, staff, and volunteers. We provide each eligible family with a private bedroom and bathroom based strictly on first come, first-serve basis. Financial need is not a consideration when admitting a family, and no family is ever asked to pay for their stay while at the Ronald McDonald House. If we do not have any rooms available at the time the family is referred, we will place them on a waiting list until such time as a room becomes available for them
The Ronald McDonald House is staffed full-time, 24 hours a day by either the Executive Director, Development Director, Program Manager, Evening Manager, Resident Manager, and Weekend Managers. The staff is assisted by a core of dedicated volunteers who add to the support system for families.
Families interested in staying at the House must live outside of Columbus, GA and Phenix City, AL and must be referred by a physician, nurse or hospital social worker or case manager. If no rooms are available, the family’s name is put on a waiting list and they are notified of the earliest vacancy.
The Ronald McDonald House in Columbus, GA features ten bedrooms with private bathrooms and all of the essentials. Room occupancy is limited to four family members per room and the rooms are furnished with twin and queen beds. The laundry area is fully equipped with washers, dryers, iron and ironing board.
The pantry is always stocked with groceries donated by the community and guests can prepare their own meals in the kitchen. There are also individual food storage areas should families prefer to bring their own food.
The Ronald McDonald House has comfortable family rooms, and a library filled with books, a computer and videos for all ages. The House also has a playroom full of toys and a porch full of sunshine and a wonderful play gym for the little ones in the back yard.
In our House, parents can break away from the hospital environment, have the support of other families and ease some of the stress associated with their child’s illness. It is a place where families can feel at home, cook their meals, watch TV, read, do their laundry and enjoy the comfort of a warm and friendly environment.
For the health and safety of our families, guests, volunteers and staff, our House is Smoke, Tobacco and Drug Free. RMHCWGA is a Georgia-certified Drug-Free Workplace.