The dilemma faced by parents Cassandra Lang and Thomas Augustine is unfortunately not an uncommon one; how to stay close to their child experiencing medical or mental health challenges. Noah, born at 34 weeks, required hospitalization in the NICU at Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids, an hour’s drive from their home in Muskegon, Michigan. His early arrival was complicated with a brain bleed and a malfunction of his little heart.
Cassandra shares, “We had no place to stay in Grand Rapids and didn’t have money for gas or a hotel. Plus, we wanted to be by Noah’s bedside all day, not driving back and forth to the hospital from Muskegon. Thanks to the Ronald McDonald House of Western Michigan, we were able to stay close to Noah, and most importantly, experience his daily progress. The wonderful doctors in the NICU kept a close watch on him, and we were able to be right there with them.”
Noah’s family story is just one example of how the RMHWM provides a warm, safe, and comfortable place to sleep, delicious meals and the support of caring staff and volunteers as well as other guest families facing similar challenges—all at no cost so families can focus solely on caring for their child.
Following a three week stay at the House, Noah’s family was able to return to their home in Muskegon. Cassandra recently reported that, “Noah, now nine weeks old, is doing amazing! He is now over 10 pounds, holding his head up by himself and almost sleeping through the night. We are so thankful to the Ronald McDonald House and the care of the doctors and nurses at the Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital NICU!”