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House History

Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin History

In the early 1980s, a small group of dedicated volunteers set out to build the first Ronald McDonald House in Wisconsin because families had no place to stay while their seriously ill child was being treated at Children’s Wisconsin. The outpouring of support to build our House was remarkable. So much so that when we opened in 1984, we called it “The House that Love Built.”

As Children’s Wisconsin made medical advances, so did the need for longer family stays. We expanded the House in 2003, adding our long-term wing with thirteen suite-style units. The demand for our unique services continued to grow, so we expanded once again and in September 2014 we opened our new addition and remodeled House. We now offer 70 private guest rooms, a new entrance, reception area and common spaces for families to gather and play. Our additional kitchens easily accommodate both family needs and our Family Meal Program.

A two-level attached parking structure was added; and the State Department of Transportation worked with RMHC Eastern WI, Children’s and the city of Wauwatosa to build a pedestrian bridge that connects the Ronald McDonald House to Children’s Wisconsin, providing our families with a safe and convenient way to stay close to their children.

Over the years, we have grown as the needs of our families have changed. Each addition and renovation allows us to provide all the comforts of home for the families we serve.

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