02 Sep Volunteer Patti Folio Finds Ways to Serve Our Family Room Families During COVID-19
Volunteers are essential in helping care for our families at our Ronald McDonald Family Room at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta — Scottish Rite and our Houses. One volunteer, Patti Folio, has continued to serve by catering meals and donating needed pantry items since the beginning of COVID-19.
“I have tried to continue helping out by sending in some meals and snacks for the pantry,” Patti says. “I also sent masks and thermometers to the House near Scottish Rite. Until we can safely return, I’ll keep looking for other ways to keep helping. I know many other volunteers and donors are doing their part.”
Every time she sees her Family Room shift pop up on the calendar, it makes her sad, Patti says. “I miss being in the space and interacting with Jamesse and the other volunteers. I really miss the families and the children and interacting with them in person. I also miss being able to serve lunches, which really brightened the day of the families and the unit staff. I hope we can come back in person soon!”
Patti’s ties to Ronald McDonald House Charities run deep. She became a volunteer at the House and Family Room because of family members who benefited from our programs. “I initially sought to be a volunteer at the House. The Family Room was just about to open and I was happy to volunteer there instead.”
“My brother’s son was born with DeGeorge’s Syndrome and needed to be hospitalized for an extensive time as a newborn,” Patti recalls. “That was 24 years ago. My nephew is healthy now and the family still raves about comfort they received at the House.”
Her brother collects toys each Christmas and has delivered them to the House for 20 years. In recent years, her cousin’s son stayed at the Ronald McDonald House in New York during cancer treatment.
“They too received a great deal of comfort by having such a wonderful place to stay when they traveled from upstate for chemo treatments,” Patti says, which is why when she decided to volunteer, the Atlanta Ronald McDonald House was a natural choice.