Camdenton family grateful for nickels and dimes that support Ronald McDonald House

Every little bit counts. Just ask a Camdenton family who learned first-hand just how important all those nickels, dimes and quarters tossed in the donation chutes at McDonald’s restaurants can be when a child needs medical care far from home.

Just five months ago, Jamie Maasen and Jason Umstead found themselves as parents of a newborn in need of medical care after a pre-term delivery at 37 weeks and a C-section. The family was faced with the challenge of staying in Springfield at Mercy Hospital with Asher, their newborn, or coming home to Camdenton.

“Asher had a heart murmur, underdeveloped lungs and had swallowed fluid during the C-section delivery. He fought an infection in his lungs and was on antibiotics for seven days. He started off on a full oxygen bubble helmet, and they [doctors] stepped down the need for oxygen as he gradually got better. He was on a feeding tube for 10 days as well,” Jamie said according to the Share A Heart family profile.

Fortunately, The Ronald McDonald House inside of Mercy Hospital opened its doors to the family providing emotional support and lodging during baby Asher’s medical crisis.

“We [Asher and family] spent 14 days at the NICU in Springfield and were approved for a room at the Ronald McDonald House inside of Mercy Hospital. As a recovering mom, the room, laundry room, hot meals and ‘home away from home’ of the Ronald McDonald House saved us from being over-stressed about needing the comforts of home and allowed us to not miss the everyday moments with Asher. We so appreciated the helpful and caring staff members and all the volunteers that provided dinners,” according to the Share A Heart family profile.

Asher is now a normal five-month-old baby; he is eating just like any other five month old, mom said. The hole in his heart is closed and there are no long-lasting effects of any kind.

Looking back, Jamie said the staff and the services provided by RMHC were a blessing.

The experience changed her perspective on the Ronald McDonald House. Before she had Asher, she never gave it a second thought when she donated change to RMHC.

“We had donated our change to Ronald McDonald House Charities at the McDonald’s drive-thru before,” she said. “And now we share our story to help other families continue to receive the much-needed help that we were lucky enough to receive when we needed it most. Now we donate every time we go to McDonald’s and encourage anyone to do the same.”

Ronald McDonald House provides a place for families to call home so they can stay close by their hospitalized child at little to no cost.”

Ronald McDonald Houses staff knows that a family’s attention centers around the sick child. The program is built on the simple idea that nothing else should matter when a family is focused on the health of their child—not where they can afford to stay, where they will get their next meal or where they will lay their head at night to rest. Their mission is make it possible for families to be with their children based on the belief that when a child is hospitalized the love and support of family is as powerful as the strongest medicine prescribed,” according to the RMHC website.

In 2016, RMHC impacted the lives of more than 5.5 million children and their families around the world. Families saved an estimated $830,110,411 in out-of-pocket lodging and meal expenses due to the presence of Ronald McDonald House and Ronald McDonald Family Room programs.Of every dollar spent by the global office of RMHC, 87-cents is used to fund RMHC programs in local communities across the globe.