The Junior League was instrumental in bringing the Ronald McDonald House to HealthPark. The home allows families to stay close to loved ones while they are in the hospital.
The Mission of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southwest Florida is to create, find and support programs that directly impact the health and wellbeing of children and their families in Southwest Florida.
A brief history of our time together with Ronald McDonald House of SWFL:
• 1991-92: Junior League donates over $32K in seed money to RMH to assist in the development of the first house in SWFL
• 1991-92: Several Junior League members served on the Board of Directors for RMH
o Lou Pontius, Sandy Stilwell, Myra Walters
• 1992-93: Junior League formed the 1st RMH community committee
o It was chaired by Bev Dommerich and members were Ann Colgin, Kimbly Hampton, Donna Pankow, Mary Royal and Jennifer Hussey.
• 1993-95: Junior League funded community projects each year for RMH
• 1994-95 Ronald McDonald House Project: chair: Sandra Brown/Stilwell
o large & small appliances were purchased in 94-95 and moved to league storage unit until next year
• 1995-96: Junior League equipped RMH with new kitchen appliances and essentials.
o That same year JLFM & Ronald McDonald House organized and hosted a “Housewarming” for all supporters
• 1996: Ronald McDonald House awards Junior League a “Certificate of Appreciation”
• 1997-98: Junior League provides park benches for boardwalk to RMH
• 1998: Junior League Past President Victoria Stephan (1996-97) has been appointed as the RMH Executive Director
• 2000-01: Junior League awards a mini-grant to RMH to re-stock kitchen items
• 2012-13: Junior League provisional class re-decorates foyer, boardroom and painted mural on bathroom walls
• 2016: Ronald McDonald House had major renovations including the kitchen, however small appliances and supplies were not part of the project.
• 2019-20: Ronald McDonald House major expansion project doubling size from 6 to 12 rooms for families, target completion Fall 2020
• 2020: Junior League Sustainers to re-stock kitchen items in November 2020
Over the years members of the Junior League of Fort Myers have continued to support “The House That Love Built” in the following various ways: volunteering in the Family Meal Programs and cooking a homecooked meal or treat for families staying at the house; participating in their young professional’s group “The Red Shoes Society”; collecting Pull-Tabs for recycling; donating much needed supplies to the Ronald McDonald Care Mobiles, and volunteering wherever the need might be.
About Ronald McDonald House
The Ronald McDonald House® of Southwest Florida is a “home-away-from-home” for families of seriously ill or injured children, receiving medical treatment at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida or other local medical facilities. Their mission is to create, find and support programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children and their families in Southwest Florida.