Ronald McDonald House of Eastern NC prepares for the holiday season amidst pandemic

Greenville

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – The Ronald McDonald House in Greenville provides for families with children staying in local hospitals. The ages range from newborn to 21 years of age.

“Being away from holidays is always tough, so we want to make sure that we make it special for families that have to be here with their child in the hospital,” said Katie Ashby, director of development at the Ronald McDonald House.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the rules have changed at the Ronald McDonald House. The house once had 25 full bedrooms, but now they can have 15 at once.

“Unfortunately during this time, we’re not allowing visitors. Most of our families are at least from 30 miles away. Really it’s just that community with one another and the staff and the hospital,” said Ashby.

The Ronald McDonald House still tries to make this season special by providing a Santa room where parents can shop for toys for their child or other family members. Greenville Service League also provides a meal on Christmas night.

One community group was there on Monday donating toys for kids for Christmas.

“With the pandemic going on, they can’t really be with their family and are not at home in their own house celebrating Christmas. It’s just hard for them. We decided to go with the Ronald McDonald house to have a better time with their family,” said Shanice Silver, a Pure Platinum Social Club member.

Silver said their organization is community-based and tries to do something special for the community every year. In the midst of one of the hardest seasons of their life, the Ronald McDonald House hopes to bring peace and joy.

“Our family’s health and safety is our top priority,” said Ashby.

Ashby said that she’s thankful for all the community support and donations for families. She added that while donations are important for this time of year, they’re welcomed all year round.

The donations that are needed the most are items for newborns and babies. Donations can be dropped off at the Ronald Mcdonald House in Greenville any day from 7 a.m. – 11 p.m.

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