Tell us about yourself...
My name is Chari and I am the Catering Supervisor for the Ronald McDonald House Charity SEQ chapter. I look after meal programs, food safety, and manage food donations with food-related activities.
I have 2 kids, a son & daughter and as a family, we used this Ronald McDonald House for 10 months, when my daughter required treatments at the hospital. So, this place is very special for our family as we know exactly what the positive impact Ronald McDonald House is on families when they are in the toughest times of their lives.
Tell us a bit more about RMHC...
Ronald McDonald House SEQ offers free long or short-term accommodation for families who come to Queensland Children’s Hospital, Royal Brisbane Women’s Hospital, and Gold Coast University Hospitals. Families who live over 50km away from hospitals are fully eligible to use these facilities for free. This is a much-needed service for those who need to stay close to their sick or ill children. Having access to these supports enables them to have a comfortable and nearby place to sleep.
Can you describe the steps you took to get to this point?
My team works to organise food donations and meal programs as required for the families staying in our facilities. With invaluable help from our corporate partners and other organisations, we receive a massive amount of help to make sure this is a success.
As a special service, our few staff as volunteers and other regular volunteers came on Christmas day and serve Christmas-worthy meals for families who had to stay during Christmas which is appreciated a lot by families.
We are working hard as a team to bring smiles and relief to the families.
What is your involvement with the loans.com.au Women, Children & Community Program?
The amazing teams from loans.com.au have come as volunteers, brought ingredients, and cooked some lovely treats for the families to grab and go. It is crucial to offer nutritional meals that suit families in a rush. It is genuinely rewarding, to see how much families appreciate this service and the relief it offers them to be able to receive this support when they have so much on their minds.
I am so glad to organise these events and meet beautiful people who make a positive difference in the charity.
How do volunteers help you achieve your goals?
The simple explanation is “Without volunteers, we can’t make this happen.” So, volunteers are the very heart of the charity. I have my own volunteer team to help me in organising events and helping while the program going on. It’s not only these programs, but they are also a huge part of the whole process of our charity. We are so lucky that we got a great volunteer team in our organisation.
How big is your network when it comes to distributing your donations?
We have fantastic corporate partners and both internal & external volunteers who involving this part. At the same time, we are connected to other related charities who provide donations of what we need and help us to distribute our donations.
What would you say to someone considering volunteering their time or donating items?
If you are in a position, you can join our great volunteer team with your own preference of skill level. As an accommodation house, we need volunteers with different skills. As a guest ambassador, baking skills, fundraising events, volunteer driving, and so on. If you want to be a part you can always get any information by email to Volunteering.SEQ@rmhc.org.au
Donating something which any family needs is a huge benefit for them. It will make it so easy on their tough situations and could be a small thing that can make a huge difference.
If you wish to do you can always go to our webpage by following, https://seqfundraising.rmhc.org.au/chapter-landing/seq1035
What are your plans for the future?
We have already established a system to get more corporate partners involved in this program. In the near future, we will launch an online booking system to make it easier to look for and book a date for their volunteer activity. In my part of work, our ultimate goal is to ‘feed people every meal in every day’. We are working so hard to go to this level and hopefully, we will be able to full fill this.