IN THIS ISSUE:
UPCOMING EVENTS

NOVEMBER
Volunteer Information Session for Adults
November 17, 2015, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m. Sign up here.

DECEMBER
Last day for donations to The Wishing Tree
Friday, December 18, 2015, 9:00 p.m. Learn more here.
SAVE THE DATE: Join hundreds of thousands across the country for the annual day of charitable giving on December 1

After giving thanks, eating turkey, Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping, remember your favorite charity, Ronald McDonald House at Stanford. Join hundreds of thousands worldwide on December 1 for #GivingTuesday and help promote the spirit of togetherness, community, and giving back. 

CLICK to learn more about Giving Tuesday and how you or your business or organization can get involved, or make a donation to Ronald McDonald House at Stanford. Thank you, and happy giving!
CEO
With the help of our generous partners, holiday preparations are underway at the House. Eric Gananian and his team at PGS, Inc. (Professional Gutter Services) have installed holiday lights on the House, as they have for the past ten years. Treetopia has donated elaborate wreaths and holiday d├ęcor and friends up and down the peninsula are requesting Wishing Tree ornaments to ensure that Santa's Workshops is stocked and ready for our families.

This time of year especially, it is easy to recognize the importance of being together with family, friends, and loved ones. For those with critically ill children, the holidays can become particularly stressful. However, at the House we do everything possible to provide our families the best holiday experience thanks to the help of our friends and neighbors in the community.   
 
The holiday season marks the launch of our annual giving campaign, which generates nearly one-third of our annual operating budget every year. These important contributions help us continue to provide for the 47 families living here each night who have left the comfort and security of home to be close to the medical care they need for their children. In their efforts to stay together and access live-saving medical treatments, they face incredibly difficult circumstances. Each story--like that of Alex and his family--is a testament to the power of persistence and hope.
 
In order to increase impact as we expand capacity, we must look to our community of House supporters to help us raise the funds necessary to continue to serve every family in need. During this season of giving, I ask you join in the spirit of community and give as generously as you can--for 47 families yours is the most valuable and priceless gift of all--it's the gift of togetherness.

With gratitude,





Annette Eros
CEO, Ronald McDonald House at Stanford
glassybaby introduces a special holiday promotion

In 1995, glassybaby was founded with the vision of combining a business of creating and retailing beautiful, custom hand-blown glass vessels and providing financial assistance to help cover the basic needs of cancer patients. 

Over the past twenty years, glassybaby has experienced consistent growth and to date has donated more than $3 million to organizations dedicated to helping people, animals, and the environment heal.

Now, just in time for holiday gift giving, Ronald McDonald House at Stanford and glassybaby announce an exciting promotion at the recently opened Stanford Shopping Center retail store. From Sunday, December 20 through Thursday, December 31, glassybaby Palo Alto will donate 10 percent of all sales to the House. 

glassybaby offers over 100 unique color designs for its products and are beautiful gifts that bring warmth and style to any home. 

Stop by the Palo Alto store at Stanford Shopping Center during the promotional period in December, pick out a beautiful holiday gift, and help keep families caring for a critically ill child close.
Help families feel at home during the holidays
Help families feel at home during the holidays by providing toys and household products during this season of giving.

The Wishing Tree program helps families staying at Ronald McDonald House at Stanford feel more at home during the holidays. 

"Families with critically ill children experience extreme stress every day. The holidays should be a special time for every family, but finding the time and resources to shop during a time of crisis often makes it prohibitive," said Annette Eros, CEO of Ronald McDonald House at Stanford. 

"Our Wishing Tree program provides the opportunity for every family here to maintain normal family traditions and share holiday joy with their kids."

Through The Wishing Tree program, paper ornaments are distributed with "wish items" to individuals and organizations throughout the Bay Area. Each year, the House receives enough donations to stock and restock Santa's Workshop during the entire holiday season. Any gifts that are not distributed in December are stored for birthdays, Valentine's Day, and other special occasions.

Perfect for groups, organizations, and businesses, participation in The Wishing Tree is a meaningful volunteer activity and an easy way to spread holiday joy.

Decorate a tree in your office, school or congregation's lobby with these ornaments, and help provide comfort and support to families spending the holidays far from home.

Pre-labeled ornaments will be sent to you for your convenience in the following categories: teens, babies, kids, parents, household, and Happy Wheels cart items.

Visit The Wishing Tree  to get started today! 

Karina Rodriguez--teen volunteer extraordinaire
Karina Rodriguez
Altruism isn't always on the top of most teens' lists, but for 17-year-old Karina Rodriguez, giving selflessly to help families in need is part of her weekly routine. Growing up, Karina accompanied her family on countless trips to Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford to visit a close family member who was often hospitalized due to a severe medical condition. Over the years, these experiences had a deep and lasting impact on Karina and it wasn't long before she set her sights on volunteering to help families cope with the stresses of caring for a seriously ill child, once she turned 16--the minimum age to volunteer.

True to her word, shortly after her sixteenth birthday last October, Karina began her volunteer career at both Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford and Ronald McDonald House at Stanford-devoting her entire Sunday every week. In addition to her volunteer hours, Karina and her parents, who drive their daughter back and forth every weekend, have logged many miles on the road as they live in Fairfield-an hour and half drive each way. 

For Karina, the experience of volunteering is well worth any inconvenience as she truly cherishes the time she spends helping families at both the hospital and the House.

"For me, volunteering is my way of giving back to those who have helped my family and countless others who are struggling with medical crises," says Karina.

At the House, Karina helps out as a House Warmer, welcoming families and visitors, responding to requests, and assisting wherever possible. Karina's friends admire her dedication, and House staff and other volunteers always appreciate her charisma, reliability, and know-how.

"We're grateful to have Karina as a dedicated volunteer," says Monica Makela, volunteer services manager at the House. "She's amazingly devoted for someone her age, and the children and families just adore her. Her native Spanish skills are also a big plus."

One of Karina's favorite projects at the House was helping out with Santa's Workshop last year.

"Working in Santa's Workshop was an amazing experience," explains Karina. "The families are so incredibly overwhelmed and grateful for the opportunity to provide gifts and help their families remain positive during a very stressful time."

Now a senior in high school, Karina has set her sights on becoming a registered nurse, specializing in either pediatrics, labor and delivery, or family medicine-hopefully one day at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital. For now, she plans to continue to volunteer as long as she can-and that is good news to us!

Interested in becoming a House volunteer? CLICK HERE to learn more.
Team RMHS goes the distance!
Congratulations to #TeamRMHS for completing the Big Sur Half Marathon in Monterey, CA on November 8!

Team RMHS was a great success thanks to our amazing race runners and walkers, and the assistance of volunteers from Silver n' Black Helping Hands Foundation who set up a cheer station to benefit all marathon participants and our community partners!

Team RMHS is an endurance training program that helps individuals and families pursue their fitness goal while raising funds to help support Ronald McDonald House at Stanford.

Interested in joining Team RMHS in 2016? Contact us and let us know. Runners and walkers of all levels are welcome. CLICK to learn more about Team!
AT RONALD McDONALD HOUSE at STANFORD

There are many ways, large and small, to get involved with Ronald McDonald House at Stanford. We welcome you to join our House community of support by contributing in whatever way you can. 

Below are some special opportunities to help children and families staying at the House feel at home.
CALL FOR DONATIONS*
We rely on the generosity of donors in our community to help provide much-needed funds, goods, and services for critically ill children and families. We welcome donations of new and unused items at the House front office seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.  Right now, we have a special need for:

HAPPY WHEELS Hospitality Cart Items
(donations accepted year-round)
THE WISHING TREE
(accepting donations up to Friday, December 18)  
  • travel-sized toothpaste/toothbrushes
  • travel-size deodorant
  • small infant toys (rattles, teethers, etc.)
  • individual 100-calorie snack packs

Help families at the House feel more at home for the holidays by participating in The Wishing Tree--it's an easy and fun way to spread holiday joy. Get involved TODAY.

LUNCH 2 GO/SNACK 2 GO
(donations accepted year-round) 
AMAZON WISH LIST
(donations accepted year-round) 
House families often don't have time to sit down and enjoy a healthy lunch or snack. You can help keep busy parents and kids fueled on the go by gathering your friends or coworkers and bagging up some nutritious lunches and portable snacks and delivering them to thankful families at the House. Lunch2Go and Snack2Go are ideal group activities for volunteers under 16 years of age. Email elee@rmhstanford.org for more information.
Our Amazon wish list contains items that can help Ronald McDonald House at Stanford provide a safe, comforting, and home-like environment for families with critically ill children. 

Also, remember that when you shop with AmazonSmile, a percentage of qualifying purchases go toward helping support House programs and services. Thank you!
To learn more about making a donation or participating in a special volunteer opportunity, please contact  Erica Lee, program coordinator, at  elee@rmhstanford.org, or call 650-470-6011.

*****

*Due to infection control protocols, all donated items must be new and unused, and perishable items must be individually wrapped. 

**Bilingual Spanish/English speaking candidates for all volunteer opportunities are given priority in the application process. The minimum age for volunteering in the House is 16 years of age.
Our Mission:
Ronald McDonald House at Stanford creates a home-away-from-home and supportive community for families of children with life-threatening illnesses receiving specialized treatment at local hospitals.