A message from our CEO and Patron
Welcome to RMHC WA’s 2022 Annual Impact Report.
2022 was a challenging year for all West Australians but for regional WA families with sick or injured children it came with a separate set of challenges. Our CEO Peter King and Patron of 23 years Adam Gilchrist reflect on how despite the wide spread of COVID-19 within our community and the rising cost of living, we remained there to provide 24/7, 365-day care and support for regional WA families when they need it us most.
A message from our Chair
My last four years as Chair of the RMHC WA Board have been a humbling experience both personally and professionally. What matters most in times of unimaginable distress and uncertainty, is family.
Working seamlessly together with our hospital partners Perth Children’s Hospital and King Edward Memorial hospital, we successfully navigated the challenges of COVID-19 to maintain our essential support to patients and families 24/7, 365 days each year.
With an exceptional Board and Executive Team, we boldly launched the RMHC WA Strategy 2020-25; a critical roadmap to double our capacity and ensure no family that needs us is turned away. Despite the pandemic and breadth of challenges, our momentum for growth gained pace in 2022 with the release of our plan to increase immediate and long-term support to families. By the end of 2023, we will support an additional 25 families each day increasing to 50 families by 2024.
As I reflect on my tenure as RMHC WA Chair I feel immensely proud of how much RMHC WA is deeply valued and respected throughout the WA community and healthcare. At the heart of this is our people; our dedicated staff and almost 400 volunteers. Each of them an essential part of what makes RMHC WA a family service like no other.
Our year in 2022
Families supported at Ronald McDonald House Programs in Nedlands, Perth Children's Hospital and alternative accommodations
Nights of supported accommodation for patients and their families
Hours of volunteer service provided
Hours of tutoring provided to young patients and their siblings
Visits to Ronald McDonald Family Rooms
Nights of respite provided at Family Retreats in Busselton and Bunbury
When a child becomes sick or injured, we help keep families together and their wellbeing supported far from home, schools, jobs and loved ones. By keeping families together, our home away from home plays a unique role in enabling, facilitating and supporting family-centred care within the WA maternity, child and adolescent health care systems.
Our family-centred care programs
For regional WA families with sick or injured children, we provide supported accommodation 24/7, 365 days a year. Meaning we’re here for families for as long and as often as they need us. Read how one brave mum Stacey called RMHC WA home for over 400 days here.
Play and learning programs
With inviting family room spaces and learning programs that keep children connected to each other and their education, we aim to make things a little easier for families in between medical appointments and beyond. When COVID-19 closures put things on hold learn how we took time to reflect and reopen stronger.
The Ronald McDonald Learning Program (RMLP) aims to bridge the gap for school aged students whose education is disrupted due to illness or injury. Find out how Angiemey returned to the classroom with the help of her RMLP tutor Leanne here.
Our Family Retreats in Busselton and Bunbury offer a welcomed sanctuary for families to reconnect, relax and play together; an experience most of us take for granted. Read how our Family Retreats gave the Xie family an opportunity to enjoy quality time together on their first-ever family holiday here.
RMHC WA – our Blue Army
Home is where the heart is and the heart of RMHC WA is its volunteers. 2022 wasn’t smooth sailing for our ‘Blue Army’ but their shared passion for helping fellow WA children and their families didn’t waiver. COVID-19 closures of our Family Rooms and restrictions within our Houses meant many changes, yet despite all the uncertainty they were there for our families 365 days and even grew to over 380 volunteers. Volunteering can be so much more than helping others and after the year that was, Adrian shares why he took the plunge and joined our Blue Army here.
How we are making a positive change in WA families’ lives
Our family-centred care family rooms, supported accommodation and programs are purpose-designed to support the wellbeing of child, adolescent and maternity patients and their families.
Our RMHC WA Impact Framework provides crucial data and insights to improve, create and collaborate services for positive change in the lives of the families we care for.
In family-centred care, all aspects of care are oriented towards supporting and involving the family with the goal of improving quality, psychological well-being, clinical outcomes and the overall patient and family experience. Here in Western Australia, one of the world’s most isolated health jurisdictions, RMHC WA understands the diverse challenges patients and families experience throughout their journey.
Family wellbeing in 2022
positive change in emotional wellbeing
Had we not stayed at RMHC WA, our emotional wellbeing would have been poor.
positive change in financial wellbeing
Had we not stayed at RMHC WA, our financial wellbeing would have been difficult to manage.
families are equally comfortable in our facilities as they are in their own home
Had we not stayed at RMHC WA, our home environmental wellbeing would have been stressful.
positive change in cultural wellbeing
Had we not stayed at RMHC WA, our cultural wellbeing would have been average.
We can’t do what we do without the important contributions from our Partners. Families who need to be in Perth for medical treatment for their sick or injured child rely on the supported accommodation and services we provide. Thanks to our generous Partners, advocates and friends we are able to help keep regional WA families together and maintain their financial and emotional wellbeing during some of the most challenging of times.
“The implementation of the RMHC WA volunteers at KEMH, has been very positively received by our patients, families, and staff. Thank you RMHC WA, your ongoing commitment to the Women’s and Newborn Health Service is greatly appreciated.”
“RMHC WA provides invaluable support to patients and families at Perth Children’s Hospital. Despite restrictions on service delivery in 2022, their staff and volunteers displayed resilience by adapting their programs to meet the changing needs of patients and families.”
“Family friends introduced me to volunteering at RMHC WA nearly three years ago. I would highly recommend it to those who have the time and want to do something that matters.”
“I love being part of RMHC WA. Over the past six years I’ve done many different roles but my favorite of all being Gus’s Paw Pal.”
“We love what the House achieves by keeping families together during their most vulnerable of times and enriching this time away from home as much as possible.”
“ABBA Engineering proudly sponsors two rooms at RMHC WA. These rooms support residents of Western Australia in need of accommodation and support while their children are being treated for illness.”
“Our RMHC WA partnership is highly valued across the organisation and a key contributor to the health and wellbeing outcomes we seek to support through our community investment activities.”
“Without RMHC our family unit would not have remained strong and we would not have had the strength and support needed to ensure our daughter was able to get well.”
"Every employee smile, every blue army volunteer helping, how it did make each day easier for us. RMHC WA is not a house, it’s a home."
"Forever grateful to be able call RMHC WA home when we were away from ours."
A message from our Treasurer
Despite challenges during 2022 Ronald McDonald House Charities Western Australia remains in a sound financial position, thanks to an outstanding operational team led by CEO Peter King and continued community, corporate and government support.
The comprehensive loss of $2.07M in 2022 is the charity’s first deficit in over 10 years. Material factors contributing towards the financial outcome include the Nedlands House building remediation works and the lingering impact of COVID-19 resulting in lower occupancy levels, delayed fundraising events, and the broader macro-economic conditions which have contributed to unrealised investment losses.
Whilst we have been challenged by these issues, the charity continues to invest in our need to deliver on mission. While some temporary headwinds are expected to continue into 2023, we anticipate that the strategies being implemented and the hard work being undertaken by our team, will return the charity to sustainable surpluses in the future.
Read our Treasurer’s full message here.
Treasurer RMHC WA
Acknowledgement of Country
Ronald McDonald House Charities WA proudly cares for families on Whadjuk Noongar Boodjar. We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of this land, the Noongar People and the Traditional Custodians, the Whadjuk People. We pay respects to the Elders past and present for they hold the memories, the traditions, the culture and hopes of Indigenous Australia.