By Mick Jensen
Ronald McDonald House, Christchurch, has been a home away from home for Ashburton parents Anna and Bradley Raukawa in recent years.
The couple have spent more than 100 nights at the facility, firstly with the premature birth of their child Neilan five years ago and then during oncology treatment for daughter Nica-May.
Both children are healthy and doing well today, but the Raukawas are forever grateful for the free accommodation and support offered to them when they needed it.
Anna Raukawa said medical treatment had been a stressful time for the family, but the burden of regular travel had been eased with stays at Ronald McDonald House.
“It allowed us to keep the family together, which was really important to us.”
Mrs Raukawa said the family would never forget the generous support from Ronald McDonald House because it had “provided a home from home”.
The Ronald McDonald House Appeal runs this Friday and the Raukawas are among those encouraging the community to give generously to support it.
So far this year, the charity has supported over 300 families and relies on public, business and volunteer support to operate its facilities.
Text FAMILY to 4483 to donate or visit the website at rmhsi.org.nz.