Ronald McDonald House sees new demographic and seeks assistance

CSRA News

There’s been a change in demographic at the Ronald McDonald House in the past six months.

With new trials on the way, kids from all over the country are coming to Augusta for help.

The CEO says her numbers for those who stay at the facility have changed from primarily newborns to kids who have cancer. She says, with newborns, typically only the mother stays, but with children, there are families that stay.

With an incoming group of children on the way, the Ronald McDonald House needs help to improve the quality of life.

It is Dkarria Kent’s second time at the the Ronald McDonald House.

“Tough, scary, sometimes I be thinking bad things will happen, but I am going to trust God and let him do what he do,” says Kent.

Those thoughts flashing through a 15-year-old girl’s mind after finding out she had six tumors on her brain and two on her spine.

Mother and resident, Shelia Holland, is hopeful, although, they’ve been down this road before.

“If her door is closed, it was hard to open the door because I didn’t know what to expect because I knew we were at such a critical state in her illness,” says Holland.

CEO and Presiden of the Ronald McDonald House, Betts Murdison, says the change in demographic stems from new immuno-therapy trials going on at the hospital.

“The trials that Dr. Johnson is doing, the first set of trials I think has 60 patients in it. Now, they’re adding about another 80 patients in July,” says Murdison.

She says they will need more rooms and volunteers.

“We need people to come into this house to make dinner, to make lunch, to bring us brand new toys,” says Murdison.

Dkarria and Shelia say the staff and volunteers behind the operation make all the difference.

When NewsChannel 6 asked Kent, “one person here who helped you the most, who is that?”

Kent pointed to Murdison, “her.”

Murdison was in shock.

“I haven’t done that much. I unlock the door for them to go out on the porch. I say ‘hello’ to them every morning and every evening, gave her a little hug, but you know that’s all it took. That made an impression,” says Murdison.

Kent’s mother says she looks at these people as their own.

“Here you’ve met an extended family. People that have impacted your life forever,” says Holland.

The Ronald McDonald House is also looking for educational programs.

If you would like to donate or volunteer to the Ronald McDonald House, you can head to RMHCAugusta.org.

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