Ronald McDonald House Charities of Oregon and SW Washington near funding goal for $1 million capital campaign

The organization is just $55,000 away from its funding goal to remodel their Bend House, built by the community in 1997 to serve families in rural Oregon

he Bend House serves a pressing need of rural families. It has been well used over the years and this transformation is badly needed.”

— Lauren Olander, RMHC of Oregon and SW Washington

BEND, OREGON, U.S., April 21, 2022 / — The Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) of Oregon and SW Washington, which provide shelters to families with sick children, have their campaign goal of $1 million almost accomplished the transformation of his home in Bend, Oregon. The home, which tells a story from central Oregon all its own, was built 25 years ago and is home to families from rural communities in Oregon and beyond whose children receive medical care in the area.

Lauren Olander, RMHC’s Chief Development Officer of Oregon and SW Washington said, “The Bend House fills a critical need for rural families. For one, St. Charles Medical Center in Bend is the only hospital east of the Cascades with a third level NICU. It has been well used over the years and this renovation is badly needed. Not only will it include a cosmetic facelift, but it will also create a whole additional ADA accessible family suite, allowing us to serve even more families.”

The Bend House fulfills the RMHC mission of providing safe spaces, comforting meals, the comforts of home and additional support for families at no cost. Most families come from rural areas where they do not have access to specialized health care. Many of the families arrive in crisis situations and the Bend House provides not just shelter but everything needed, including networking with additional community support organizations and volunteers for ongoing care.

The facility’s interior renovation is scheduled to begin May 1, involving many of the local subcontractors who built the home in the 1990s. The wood came from mature trees in the Central Oregon region, including some in Bend’s Drake Park that were removed due to instability or disease. These trees became stunning beams for the lodge style interior that will remain intact. The non-profit organization has secured a long-term lease to families in need for the duration of the renovation work, which is scheduled to be completed in autumn 2022.

Kris Calvin of Earthwood Timber Frame Homes of Oregon in Sisters built the home while teaching a timber frame master class. Builders from all over Oregon and a few from abroad got together to build the house. They employed traditional craftsmanship, using oak pins instead of nails to join aged wood. An architectural gem with a warm, rustic feel, the single storey building offers a great room with a stone fireplace and will be able to accommodate seven families once the renovation is complete.

Erin Borla, executive director and trustee of the Roundhouse Foundation, a major funder of the fundraiser, said, “This remarkable resource exists because of the true spirit of the Central Oregon community, which has come together to create it on many levels — from local builders to local fellas Use wood to collect donations from your own cultivation. Today, the community is once again called together to restore a vital resource to rural families who face the daunting challenges of traveling far from home to access health care for their children.”

Please contact or 541-728-4378 to help the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Oregon and SW Washington achieve their fundraising goal. Other upcoming events in support of the organization’s mission include the annual Central Oregon Open golf tournament, held June 3 at Eagle Crest, and the nationwide Hope Lives Here virtual gala on October 8.

Key supporters of the capital campaign to date have included The Roundhouse Foundation; The Ford Family Foundation; Maybelle Clark McDonald; First Interstate Bank; Central Oregon Association of Realtors; Les Schwab tire centers; Deschutes County; and Marie Lam from the Charity Foundation. RMHC would like to thank these donors and all individual donors for their support of this campaign.

About Ronald McDonald House Oregon and SW Washington Charities
The Ronald McDonald House Charities of Oregon and SW Washington (RMHC) provide compassionate hospitality, access to life-saving medical care and a community of support to thousands of seriously ill or injured children and their families each year. Our home away from home is designed to ease the financial and logistical burdens families face when an emergency pediatric crisis strikes. At RMHC, we believe that when a child is ill and receiving care, it is important that the child’s family is close by, loving and encouraging them every step of the way for as long as it takes. We take away the added stress of commuting, hotel expenses, laundry, meals and necessities and provide a strong support community away from home. All this at no cost to families.

RMHC is the only free housing resource of its kind serving Oregon and SW Washington. Today, our organization operates four Ronald McDonald Houses in Oregon: two in Portland on the campus of Portland Randall Children’s Hospital and OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital, one in Springfield on the PeaceHealth Medical Center campus, and one in Bend at St. Charles Medical Center. Every three hours a family checks into one of our houses. From a single night’s stay to longer stays of over 260 nights, we’ll take care of families for as long as they need. In 2021, we provided a total of 17,967 free room nights, saving families nearly $2.7 million while increasing access to life-saving healthcare for thousands of sick children. In addition to accommodation, our complimentary full service includes 24-hour meal service; Transport; Clothing; Childcare; emotionally supportive activities; and access to community services like haircuts, music, and pet therapy.


Marie Melsheimer
Campbell Advice
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