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Bristol House

The Trustees of Ronald McDonald House Bristol and Ronald McDonald House Charities UK are delighted that the Bristol House joined the wider Ronald McDonald House Charities UK family in November 2022.

Ronald McDonald House Bristol

Now as part of the Ronald McDonald House Charities UK family, Ronald McDonald House Bristol has access to further resource, expertise, funding, and financial savings, helping the House respond to increasing demands and better able to plan for the future. The two charities share the same purpose and are a part of the same global network of charities – providing a ‘home away from home’ and support for families with children in hospital.

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Ronald McDonald House Charities UK is a national charity, and remains committed to local impact. We now work with 14 NHS partner hospitals at major children’s centres.

Having joined Ronald McDonald House Charities UK in November 2022, Ronald McDonald House Bristol is planning future enhancements to the quality of accommodation, as well as additional services and support.

Donations will continue to support families from Bristol and beyond, across the UK network of 14 Ronald McDonald Houses, including Ronald McDonald House Bristol.

Globally, the Ronald McDonald House Charities organisation has been helping families since 1974.

FAQ’s

What are the benefits to the families, staff and donors of the Ronald McDonald House in Bristol, now they are part of Ronald McDonald House Charities UK?

Benefits to the families:

  • Ensuring the financial health of the House and that it stays open for as long as families need free accommodation
  • Enhancements to the quality of accommodation provided in the Bristol House
  • Additional services and support

Benefits to staff:

  • Ensuring the financial health of the House and that it stays open and jobs are maintained
  • Private medical insurance
  • Employee discounts scheme
  • Formal and informal training opportunities
  • Development opportunities from being employed by a national charity with good UK coverage

Benefits to donors:

  • Savings in administration means more donations can go towards the front line service
  • The ability for donations to support families from Bristol not just in the Bristol House itself, but across the entire UK network – families often travel far for medical treatment

What is Ronald McDonald House Bristol?

  • Ronald McDonald House Bristol has 21 bedrooms providing free ‘home away from home’ accommodation to families with children in the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children.
  • Ronald McDonald House Bristol opened in 2002 and it costs over £650k each year to run.
  • Every year more than 400 families come through the doors. The Ronald McDonald House offers support and a safe place, just a stone’s throw away from the hospital, as families experience the toughest time of their lives.

What is Ronald McDonald House Charities UK?
Ronald McDonald House Charities UK is an independent charity providing free ‘home away from home’ accommodation and support for families with children in hospital. The Charity currently runs 14 Ronald McDonald Houses at partnered NHS Hospitals, offering up to 531 rooms for families.

Families can stay in a Ronald McDonald House for as long as they need to. All but one of our Houses are open 365 days a year and are equipped with everything you would find in a family home. Families can get a good night’s sleep, prepare their own meals and feel at home, knowing that they are only moments away from their child.

What is the relationship between Ronald McDonald House Bristol and Ronald McDonald House Charities UK?
Ronald McDonald House Charities UK was fundamental in the setting up of Ronald McDonald House Bristol. The Charity donated £765,000 to build the House. At that time, Ronald McDonald House Charities UK was helping to fund and set up Houses but not actively running the day-to-day operations, so a local charity was set up to run Ronald McDonald House Bristol.

Both Ronald McDonald House Bristol and Ronald McDonald House Charities UK hold licenses from Ronald McDonald House Charities Global headquarters, based in Chicago. The charities have the same purpose and provide a ‘home away from home’ and support for families with children in hospital.

How is McDonald’s involved?

McDonald’s helped Ronald McDonald House Charities UK raise money to build the Bristol House. Since then, as a corporate charity partner, McDonald’s locally helps to support the Charity in a variety of ways. Local McDonald’s restaurants, as well as fundraising for Ronald McDonald House Charities UK, have also fundraised for the Bristol House, and McDonald’s representatives have been on the Bristol House board of trustees to help govern and support the Charity.

What will happen to the staff at Ronald McDonald House Bristol?

All staff at Ronald McDonald House Bristol were retained or offered an undiminished position within Ronald McDonald House Charities UK.

What is so special about a Ronald McDonald House?
A Ronald McDonald House is more than just a place to stay. It offers a safe environment where families can interact and share their experiences.

All Houses provide;

  • Family bedrooms providing accommodation for up to four people so that siblings can be near their parents.
  • Communal facilities providing areas for cooking, eating, laundry and relaxing. Some Houses have garden areas and play rooms. They encourage families to interact with one another during what can be a very difficult time.
  • Each House is sensitively designed to fit in with the local landscape and has high quality materials, on both the interior and exterior.

Can I ring-fence my donation to the Bristol House now they are part of Ronald McDonald House Charities UK?

Just like any charity, Ronald McDonald House Charities UK needs to spend donations where they are most needed; this would include Ronald McDonald House Bristol. Donors would be discouraged from ring-fencing their gift but we would consider it for large donations or in special circumstances.

Read some of the family stories from those who have stayed in our UK Houses

“We nearly lost her”: Pixie’s story

30th Apr 2024

It was during Sam’s 20-week pregnancy scan that doctors discovered something was wrong with her unborn baby’s heart. The following week, Sam, who lives near…

Read more

“A terrifying experience”: Oliver’s story

26th Apr 2024

Oliver was a newborn baby when he was diagnosed with tetralogy of Fallot (TOF), a form of congenital heart disease affecting the heart’s structure and…

Read more

“Everything would be OK, as long as we were all together”: Leon’s Story

18th Apr 2024

After Sophie learnt during her pregnancy that her fourth baby had a rare and serious heart condition, she and her partner Eoin were shell-shocked. Not…

Read more

Cerebral Palsy Warrior: Oisín’s story

2nd Apr 2024

Oisín was born at King’s College Hospital in London in May 2018, prematurely, at just 25 weeks. His premature delivery came after his mum developed…

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“The House was our saviour”: Arthur’s story

2nd Apr 2024

***Trigger warning: infant loss*** Arthur was diagnosed with “near-miss” sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) in April 2023 at just 10 days old. He had a…

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“We wouldn’t have coped without it”: Tobias’ story

28th Mar 2024

Tobias was born on 28 January 2022, three weeks before his due date. Arriving by planned caesarean section, due to being a footling breech, his…

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“The Houses became our sanctuaries”: Maisy’s story

19th Mar 2024

Parents Jaimie-Lee and James discovered early on during Jaimie-Lee’s pregnancy that their little girl would be born with Down’s syndrome and a heart condition. Overwhelmed…

Read more

“A little glimpse of normality in a world of chaos”: Freddie’s story

23rd Feb 2024

***Trigger warning: This story contains images and details that some readers may find upsetting*** When Imee and Matt welcomed twin boys Freddie and George into…

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“The House was a godsend”: James’s story

15th Feb 2024

Victoria and Matthew were delighted to be expecting their first baby, a little boy they’d name James, after several years of trying to fall pregnant….

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