Volunteer Spotlight – Hospitality Suite

Volunteer Spotlight – Hospitality Suite

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Ohio expanded its presence to area hospitals with our Hospitality Suite in 2019. The goal of the Hospitality Suite is to keep families closer together. It’s staffed for four hours a day to allow parents and loved ones to stay within arms-length of their child.

Meet Elaine, one of the volunteers at our Hospitality Suite at the ProMedica Children’s Hospital. Elaine has been a volunteer with RMHC of NW Ohio for over a year. She is a stay-at-home-mom with a passion for volunteering.

Some of Elaine’s duties at the Hospitality Suite include: making coffee, cleaning, restocking the snacks and being a friendly face for families.

“Being there to support families is a big part of volunteering at the Hospitality Suite,” says Elaine. “Having someone for parents to talk to that is not a medical person, gives parents a chance to clear their head and refresh.”

RMHC of NW Ohio currently has two volunteers for the Hospitality Suite, however, we are looking for more volunteers.

“Everyone should volunteer. It’s wonderful to be able to support someone in their time of need and the medical staff” says Elaine.

To donate goods or to volunteer at the Hospitality Suite, contact Wendy@rmhctoledo.org.

Volunteer Appreciation Month – Deric Vaughn Bolden

Volunteer Appreciation Month – Deric Vaughn Bolden

Deric Vaughn Bolden

Deric (Vaughn) Bolden is a volunteer at Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) of Northwest Ohio. He has been volunteering at RMHC for a little more than a year and has a passion for giving back and helping others.

Vaughn’s story is one of redemption.

Prior to volunteering at RMHC, Vaughn was going through a dark period of his life. Checking himself into rehab, Vaughn has now come out of rehab more than two years sober. “When I was in that period of my life, I realized that when I become in a better place, I have to do the right thing and give back to others” says Vaughn. Seeing commercials for RMHC, Vaughn picked up the phone and was eager to volunteer at the House.

While each volunteer at RMHC has specific tasks that they work on, Vaughn is a jack-of-all-trades. Some of his tasks are cleaning, answering calls and maintaining the front desk and “doing anything asked of him”.

While not volunteering at RMHC, Vaughn is an author and artist. He has written two children’s books and has painted a beautiful piece of art displayed in the playroom. His children’s books titled “Benny in the Race” teaches children to stay motivated and never give up, while “A Boy Named Hero” is a story about a kid with a disability who is bullied and becomes a superhero who helps others with disabilities. The piece of art that Vaughn created for the playroom is shown below.

When asked about what advice Vaughn would give to others on volunteering, he says, “It’s a great choice to give back to others and do something that is bigger than yourself.” Vaughn told us that volunteering has taught him to be mindful of others. “Some people may be having the worst day of their life. It really puts everything into perspective and teaches you that life may not be as bad as you think.”

Volunteers at RMHC of NW Ohio are crucial to our organization’s impact on families. To volunteer at Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Ohio, please contact Wendy Bejaige at wendy@rmhctoledo.org.

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Ohio is a finalist for the “Best Place To Volunteer” in the Toledo Area Parent News 2021 Family Favorite Awards. To vote for RMHC, click HERE.

Volunteer Appreciation Month – Mike Grames

Volunteer Appreciation Month – Mike Grames

Mike Grames - Volunteer Appreciation Month

Mike Grames is a volunteer at Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) of Northwest Ohio where he focuses on baking for families. Since his retirement nearly 13 years ago, volunteering has been a part of his life. He spent eight years volunteering for the Toledo Area Humane Society and has been volunteering at RMHC for the past four-plus years.

Every year, millions of pounds of pull tabs are donated to RMHC to fund the pantry.

“My interest in volunteering began when I was dropping off pull tabs and noticed that they (RMHC) were in need of someone to volunteer to bake/cook,” says Mike. “Initially it was just holidays, but I guess they liked my baking and asked me to come in twice a week.”

Every week, Mike is at RMHC on Tuesday and Friday to bake goods for families.

“If I can make cookies, brownies or anything else that provides a couple minutes of enjoyment for families that are going through a difficult time, then my goal is accomplished” explains Mike.  Mike says he doesn’t have any favorites among his goodies but a quick poll of the staff indicated that his Almond Joy cookies are No. 1.

Volunteers are always needed at RMHC for different tasks.

Wendy Bejaige, Director of Operations, says that “Mike is always eager to help. Whether it’s coming in to bake for holidays or parties, he always has a smile on his face and is willing to do more.” For example, Bejaige cited a 15-year-old was at RMHC with her family, and Mike took the time to teach her how to bake during his free time.

If you’re considering volunteering, Mike wants you to know that “If you have the time, means and ability, there is nothing like helping others. What you get back is way more than what you give.”

To volunteer at Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Ohio, please contact Wendy Bejaige at wendy@rmhctoledo.org.

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Ohio is a finalist for the “Best Place To Volunteer” in the Toledo Area Parent News 2021 Family Favorite Awards. To vote for RMHC, click HERE.

 

Giving Back To Families In Need

Giving Back To Families In Need

In a time where helping others is needed more than ever, one group of local students has found a way to give back to families in need.

The Penta Career Center Job Training Program volunteers twice a week during the school year from 10:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m. and have been doing this since 2014. Julia, senior at Penta says “I like helping people because with COVID-19, I can provide a clean environment for kids to play in.”

This volunteering is a part of the curriculum for the Job Training Program at Penta Career Center. According to Amanda Williams, Job Training Coordinator for Penta, the program helps improve work and daily-living skills by teaching students the basics, including how to help the community, shop for groceries, clean and much more!

“Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Ohio is a great place for students to volunteer,” Williams said. “Students help the house out while learning their daily skills which are proven to be useful in the future.”

Please visit PentaCareerCenter.org to learn more about the Job Training Program.

To volunteer at Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Ohio, please contact Wendy Bejaige, Director of Program Services, at 419-471-4663 ext. 6113 or wendy@rmhctoledo.org.

For media enquiries, please contact Adam Simpson, Communications and Marketing Coordinator, at 419-471-4663 ext. 6102 or adam@rmhctoledo.org.