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January 14th, 2022
It’s a relatively quiet morning here in the Family Room. Someone is watching a home remodeling show on HGTV, and a few other folks are working remotely on their laptops. Someone else is making a cup of coffee in the Keurig, and volunteer Lori is making Chex Mix for the families in the kitchen while I help check in a new arrival. It’s a bitterly cold January day but here in the Family Room, it’s warm and cozy, a welcoming respite for families while their loved ones are in treatment.
“Warm and welcoming” is the refrain we hear again and again from families in their feedback about the Family Room, and that’s exactly what we strive to be for everyone who walks through our door. A safe place to forget about the hospital for a little while, to forget about being far from home, to forget about doctors and schedules and just be together as a family.
Since the Family Room opened in August of 2021, we have welcomed over two thousand visitors. Some families are only able to come once on a rare cross-country visit, and some folks are here almost every day, getting to know each other and bond over their similar journeys.
For such a small space, the Family Room has a huge impact on every one of our visitors. From a large family finally being able to play a board game together after weeks apart, to throwing a surprise birthday party for a residential patient, or a mom and daughter doing some arts and crafts together while watching a movie in the Creativity Room, every single corner of this wonderful space holds opportunities for families to spend precious time together.
As we start 2022, I look forward to welcoming even more guests to our little corner of Oconomowoc and giving every family who visits a chance to find moments of joy together.
Ronald McDonald Family Room Coordinator