Ronald McDonald House opening doors to Spectrum patients’ families

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Ronald McDonald House of Western Michigan Courtesy Ronald McDonald House of Western Michigan

A nonprofit that provides free room and board to families with children receiving medical or mental health treatment is opening its doors to house families with sick children at Spectrum Health.

The Ronald McDonald House of Western Michigan (RMHWM) said Wednesday that it teamed up with Spectrum Health’s Renucci Hospitality House beginning last week to transition families from the Renucci Hospitality House to RMHWM.

The move is to free up potential clinical space at the Renucci Hospitality House.

The remaining families from RMHWM were transitioned to the downtown Grand Rapids Hampton Inn armed with meal supplies.

Because of the shift, Spectrum Health can temporarily take over management of RMHWM during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Together, we are part of the all hands-on deck strategy to meet the potential needs of the community during this challenging pandemic,” said Ellen Carpenter, executive director of RMHWM.

Both Renucci House and Ronald McDonald House currently are not accepting additional reservations for families, a decision made several weeks ago as COVID-19 cases emerged in West Michigan.

“Crisis situations are difficult for everyone, but even more so when your family is already experiencing another crisis with a critically ill child,” Carpenter said.

“We are so proud of our partnership and the ability to come together in another example of the West Michigan community spirit.”

Ronald McDonald House of Western Michigan

Founded in 1990, the Ronald McDonald House of Western Michigan provides a “home-away-from-home” for families traveling to Grand Rapids for their child’s medical or mental health treatment.

Families live at the RMHWM, where they have access to a safe, clean and comfortable room with a bath and hot meals, and transportation to and from the hospital, all at no cost to the families.

Over 85% of the current resident families have children in Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital.

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