The new Ronald McDonald House Westmead, which now offers rural and regional families with a sick child a home-away-from home, was officially opened by Governor-General, His Excellency General, the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd) at a ceremony held earlier this week.
Double the capacity of the old facility, Ronald McDonald House will be able to support up to 1,360 families with a seriously ill child a year, offering them a place that is close to The Children’s Hospital at Westmead.
“On behalf of NSW Health I would like to congratulate Ronald McDonald House Charities in Greater Western Sydney on the new larger House which offers 60 families each night a home-away-from-home,” NSW Health Secretary Elizabeth Koff said.
“A child receiving treatment at hospital is always stressful event, but more so if you have to travel a great distance to receive that treatment. Ronald McDonald House goes some way to alleviating this stress.” Koff said.
The NSW Government donated $10 million towards the Ronald McDonald House Westmead expansion, a commitment made by former NSW Premier Mike Baird in 2015. Additional funds were raised via a capital appeal. The Building Love Campaign, launched in 2015, received ongoing support from corporates and the community, raising a further $30 million.
New facilities include multiple room types, a custom designed fully accessible bathroom, numerous retreat areas, a Learning Centre, health and fitness centre, six individual family kitchens and a dedicated volunteers’ kitchen.
In 2015, the NSW Government also announced more than $900 million towards the redevelopment of the Westmead precinct, ensuring the precinct continues to deliver world- class and integrated healthcare, education and research and respond to the growing population needs of Western Sydney.
The first stage of the Westmead Redevelopment is focused on setting up the Westmead precinct to support the delivery of high-end clinical services, education and research. It will co-locate complex and critical care services into a multi-storey, centrally located acute services building.