Workers at Ronald McDonald House Charities UK were delighted this week with a donation of three months’ worth of laundry chemical supplies to Ronald McDonald House Oxford.
The donation was from Newbury-based commercial laundry equipment specialist WASHCO, which provides installation and maintenance of industrial laundry equipment in multiple sites throughout the UK.
The company counts iconic brand and institutions like The Dorchester, The Savoy and Winchester College amongst its clients.
Despite restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ronald McDonald House Charities UK opened its new 62-bedroom facility at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital in May 2020.
The House in Headington has everything a family could need to continue some semblance of normal life, including kitchens, laundry facilities, day rooms and a garden.
Ronald McDonald House Oxford has supported over 200 families in the last year, continuing the charity’s commitment to providing free ‘home away from home accommodation’ to families with sick children in hospital.
Of their support for Ronald McDonald House Charities UK, WASHCO Sales Director, James Holmes, said: “We have been impressed by the impact that Ronald McDonald House Charities UK has for those families with a child in hospital, particularly over the last year.
“As many of our customers are in social care, we are acutely aware that charities have played a critical role in maintaining safety and infection control during the pandemic and, as a business, we are committed to giving back to our communities.
“When I heard that the new Ronald McDonald House Oxford had opened for families of children at John Radcliffe Hospital, we considered how we could best support the charity at a time when fundraising is very tough, and decided a product donation would have the most impact.”
Claire Willis, a mum who has used Ronald McDonald House Oxford, said: “When our son Teddy had surgery at the age of one, we could not have coped as a family without Ronald McDonald House Oxford. Having a room there meant everything to us -we could function, we could go to bed and rest, but we had a phone by our bed with a direct line to the ward and intensive care.
“We had access to washing machines, dryers and irons, so when Teddy was very ill after his surgery and was sick on his comfort blanket, within an hour, I washed and tumble dried it in the House. You can’t appreciate what the facility truly means until you experience it.”
Ronald McDonald House Charities UK Fundraiser, Caroline Sinclair, added: “We were overwhelmed when James and the WASHCO team got in touch to offer laundry chemicals to us, saving the charity a huge cost. We do all our laundry in-house, and families staying with us also have access to a laundry room, so this is a significant help to us as a Charity.”
Ronald McDonald House Oxford is one of 12 Houses in the UK run by Ronald McDonald House Charities UK. All Ronald McDonald Houses are situated in or near hospital grounds to enable seriously ill children to have their families close by when they are undergoing treatment. These facilities are a vital form of support for children and families, helping them to maintain a degree of normality in their life.
Visit https://rmhc.org.uk/ to find out more about Ronald McDonald House Charities UK.