Families staying at the Ronald McDonald House often experience stress due to the illness or health status of their child. The Family Meal Program offers groups of volunteers the opportunity to extend needed support to these families by providing and preparing a meal at the House.
Family dinners are served at both of our Houses on Sunday through Thursday at 5:00 PM. Arrival time is 3:00 PM. At House A, groups provide food for 90 people and a group size of 9-15 volunteers is allowed. At House C, groups provide food for 25 people and a group size of 3-8 volunteers is allowed. The actual number of people attending a given meal varies greatly. However, whether the food is eaten at mealtime or as leftovers, it will be much appreciated. The average cost of providing dinner at House A is $400.00, depending on the menu. The average cost of providing dinner at House C is $150.00, depending on the menu. (For details, see Food Safety Guidelines and Preparing For Your Meal)
Saturday brunch is served at House A only. Arrival time is 8:00 AM. Brunch is served at 9:30 AM. A group size of 6-15 volunteers is allowed. Service is planned for 75 people. With the limited preparation time, the menu should be relatively simple with an emphasis on continental-style brunch options. (For details, see Food Safety Guidelines and Preparing For Your Meal)
Friday Night Pizza at House A—no cooking! The group arrives at 5:00. Pizza is served at 6:00. Clean up is completed close to 7:30. No prior onsite orientation is required. Information for the lead will be provided by phone. Group size may range from 6-15 volunteers. Teens may participate however, there must be as many adults as teens in the group.
The group provides the following to serve 90 people:
- 30 large cooked pizzas delivered by the pizza restaurant to the House or picked up by the group
- dessert which requires no cutting or serving (cookies, cupcakes, ice cream bars)
The House provides beverages and all necessary equipment. (For details, see Friday Night Pizza)
Optional Resources for Planning Your Meal
- Menu Planning for Brunch and Dinner
- Friday Night Pizza
- Pizza Restaurants Near Ronald McDonald House
- Meal Program Recipe Book
- RHMC on Pinterest
- Measurement Equivalents
- Cooking Rice in our Commercial Rice Cooker
- Food Quantity Chart
- Sample Menu, Work Station Set-up and Dinner Night Timeline
- How to Wash Produce
- Meal Preparation Checklist House A
- Meal Preparation Checklist House C
- Grill Cleaning House A
- Grill Cleaning House C
- Volunteer Guidelines
- Driving Directions
Things to Consider:
- An onsite orientation attended by at least two members of the group is required for first-time brunch and dinner groups, and needs to be scheduled one or more weeks prior to the first meal. This is scheduled on an individual basis and lasts an hour. Friday Night Pizza group leads receive an orientation by phone which takes about 15 minutes.
- All food must be prepared onsite or purchased from/prepared in a commercial kitchen (store, restaurant). No food preparation may take place in a home kitchen.
- Participants create their own group and supply the food. We are unable to provide the option of joining an existing group.
- This is an adult group opportunity. Volunteers must be at least 13 years of age. Teens may participate but the group must have as many or more adults than teens. Teens must have had chickenpox or been immunized for chickenpox.
- Meals are served buffet style.
- Our kitchen is equipped with the necessary equipment to prepare and serve your meal. BBQ grills are available during summer months. Advance reservation of the grills is required.
Step 1: Find an open date on the calendar below that works for your group.
Step 2: Contact Eleanor Garrison, Activities Coordinator, at email@example.com to request a date.
If your group is a first time group, include the following information:
- Name, phone number, and email address of the lead
- Is your group affiliated with a business or organization or is it personal (family/friends)
- Company name and business address if applicable, otherwise a personal address
- Group name that you would like used on our online calendar and House calendar
- If teens are participating, the ages and total number of teen volunteers in your group
- Total number of volunteers you expect to participate
Step 3: A confirmation email will be sent to acknowledge your meal date request and confirm the date is available and has been scheduled.
Step 4: For first time groups, schedule an onsite orientation meeting to take place at least one week prior to your scheduled meal. The meeting is scheduled on an individual basis, and takes an hour. At least two volunteers should attend. To schedule: contact Eleanor Garrison at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 206.838.0621.