Edinburgh Hospital for Sick Children: Doors open to Ronald McDonald House


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The 25 bedroom house provides families across Scotland with a free place to sleep and cook while helping to maintain a sense of normal life.

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Parents Alison and Donald Livingston at Ronald McDonald House in Edinburgh.
Parents Alison and Donald Livingston at Ronald McDonald House in Edinburgh.

It also saves families an average of £ 1,867 in accommodation costs.

The new service officially opens today (April 7) but a family in need has already benefited from the new service.

The parents of Lucy Livingston, 14, from the Isle of Skye, were referred to the service yesterday after problems with their daughter’s spinal fusion treatment led to an extended stay in the capital.

Donald and Alison Livingston said they “didn’t know” what they would have done without the Ronald MacDonald House.

Mr Livingston said: ‘If we hadn’t had accommodation, I’m not sure how we would have handled this, coming from Skye.

“I don’t know how it would have worked in a post-covid environment, trying to find accommodation in Edinburgh.

“I can’t imagine how difficult that would be. We should have traveled continuously.

“It’s a lifeline. This is exactly what you would need for what we are going through.

Ms Livingston said she was delighted to be able to cook in the accommodation’s kitchen and not have to live on take out and microwave meals.

She said: “I think cooking gives you a bit of normalcy. It’s a strange environment, living in the hospital, and being able to go out and make a cup of tea and cook your dinner and eat right and not live. take out, makes a big difference.

Mr Livingston added that being able to stay so close to their daughter made her experience in the hospital easier.

He said: “Ronald McDonald’s facilities are five minutes away from Lucy, so we’re both able to take turns and go see her. We could escape to sleep or just take a little break whenever we wanted.

Manager of Ronald McDonald House Edinburgh, Gary Ridgewell there is a constant flow of visitors who are starting to stay in the accommodation.

He said: “We are welcoming families on a regular basis, in line with current covid restrictions, and hope to welcome many more as the restrictions ease, as they seek the best possible care for their child. ‘hospital.

The costly project was made possible by support from McDonald’s customers, restaurants and franchisees in Scotland, who have raised £ 3.9million through the Scottish Government’s baggage billing initiative.

Graham Angus, local McDonald’s franchisee, said, “The McDonald’s family is so proud to support such an amazing charity, and to see the net baggage proceeds go to such a brilliant cause is a proud moment for us and our clients.

Football star Kenny Dalglish visited the brand new family accommodation today to celebrate the grand opening.

He said: “As a parent myself, I can only imagine the hardships families experience when their child is sick in hospital.

“I am very happy to support this fantastic cause which will help support more families in difficult times.

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