FAQs

General

Baby2What is Ronald McDonald House Charities of Western Washington & Alaska?
Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) of Western Washington & Alaska is a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) organization and a chapter of the global RMHC. Our Houses are located in Seattle and Anchorage, and each provides a caring home away from home for families of seriously ill children. RMHC extends its reach at the Alaska Native Medical Center by also providing van transportation to families staying in Anchorage while their children receive treatment.

Who owns and operates the Seattle Ronald McDonald House?
The House is owned and operated by Ronald McDonald House Charities of Western Washington & Alaska and is governed by a local Board of Directors.

Who runs the Seattle and Anchorage Ronald McDonald House?
Ronald McDonald House Charities of Western Washington & Alaska has a paid staff that runs the day-to-day operations of both the Seattle and Anchorage Houses. The Anchorage House is on the campus of the Alaska Native Medical Center and they provide day to day oversight. Both Houses are also supported by volunteers.

How can I contact the Ronald McDonald House? 
The general phone number for our Seattle House and Administrative Offices is 206.838.0600. In Anchorage, our general phone number is 907.729.4667. For more contact information, please see our staff list for phone numbers and email addresses.

How many Ronald McDonald Houses are there?
Currently, there are more than 350 Ronald McDonald Houses throughout the United States. All operate under licensing guidelines from the global Ronald McDonald House Charities. However, each Ronald McDonald House is independently operated.

How is your organization funded?
By generous supporters like you! About 75% of our operating funds come from individuals, organizations and businesses in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska. It costs about $4.4 million annually to operate RMHC of Western Washington & Alaska. The majority of that amount is raised through individual and corporate donations. These include the Share-A-Night program, RMHC-sponsored and other fundraising events, grants, will bequests, property and goods donations.

Does McDonald’s Corporation subsidize the House?
Local McDonald’s restaurant owner/operators, customers, and the McDonald’s Corporation fund 22 percent of our annual operating costs. This funding includes in-store canister donations and newspaper sales, promotions and annual gifts from McDonald’s restaurant owner/operators.

How much does it cost to run the Ronald McDonald Houses? 
RMHC of Western Washington & Alaska has a $4.4 million operating budget. This is used for maintaining and operating the Ronald McDonald Houses every day of the year.

Can families receive mail or packages at the House? 
Yes. All mail and packages should be addressed to your room as follows:
For Seattle: Your child’s name (patient) and Building/Room Number, Ronald McDonald House, 5130 40th Ave NE, Seattle, WA 98105. Mail is delivered Monday-Friday.
For Anchorage: Your child’s name (patient), Ronald McDonald House at ANMC, 4001 Tudor Centre Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508.

Is smoking permitted at the Houses?
Our Anchorage House is on the ANMC campus, which is a tobacco-free area. Smoking is not permitted inside or outside the House in Anchorage.
In Seattle, smoking is prohibited indoors. However, after dark, families are allowed to smoke in a designated outdoor smoking area (25+ feet away from the main entrance) at the Seattle House.

Do I have to bring my own linens?
No. Towels, blankets, and other linens are provided at both Houses.

Is there babysitting service? 
No. Parents are required to be responsible for their own children and provide supervision at all times.

Is there a curfew? 
The Houses are open 24 hours a day for families staying there to come and go. Visiting hours in Seattle are between 9 AM and 8 PM. Visiting hours to the Ronald McDonald House in Anchorage are 9 AM to 9 PM – please note that visiting hours for the rest of the building may differ.

Are pets allowed? 
Only service animals are allowed in the House and require advance approval.

Does the House provide counseling? 
There is no formal counseling program, but families get support from staff, volunteers, and other families going through similar experiences.

Ronald McDonald House at Alaska Native Medial Center (ANMC)

Where is the Ronald McDonald House at ANMC located? 
This House is located on the sixth floor of the new patient housing building at the Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage:

Ronald McDonald House at ANMC
4001 Tudor Centre Drive
Anchorage, AK 99508

How big is the Ronald McDonald House at ANMC? 
The floor comprising the Ronald McDonald House includes 34 rooms and communal spaces, like a cozy living room, fully equipped kitchen, and laundry room. Families staying at this House will also have access to the amenities of the ANMC housing building, such as their workout area and cafeteria., The building is connected to ANMC via Skybridge.

What is in a room?
Each room has its own bathroom, sleeper chair, and full sized bed. Additionally, each room offers its own TV and internet connectivity. Towels and linens are also provided.

How can I stay at the House in Alaska? 
All requests for housing are processed via our partner, the Alaska Native Medical Center. Please see their website for details.

What transportation options are available? 
An RMHC van is available to transport families to local stores, pharmacies, etc. The Alaska Native Medical Center is connected to the housing building via Skybridge.

What security measures are taken to ensure the safety of families? 
The safety of our families is very important. At our Anchorage location, we do the following:

  • Identification is required for all registered adults and all adult guests at the ANMC Housing Building’s front desk.
  • All families are screened to prevent infectious diseases being brought into the House.
  • Anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult relative or legal guardian.

Seattle House

How big is the Seattle Ronald McDonald House?
The Seattle House can accommodate 80 families each night in three buildings. House A houses 48 families; House C houses 22 families, and our Bone Marrow Transplant Apartments are self-contained units for 10 families. These facilities are within walking distance of Seattle Children’s Hospital.

How can I support the Seattle Ronald McDonald House?
By donating and volunteering! We could not operate the House without donations from individuals and groups. Our volunteers are the heart and soul of our House – and the reason we can accomplish so much with such a small staff.

Who can stay at the Seattle House?
Families of seriously ill children undergoing medical treatment at Children’s Hospital who live more than 45 miles from Seattle may stay at the House. Most of our families come from Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho. However, we serve families from throughout the U.S. and world. See our housing eligibility guidelines for more information.

How much does it cost to stay at the Seattle Ronald McDonald House?
We ask families to contribute $30 per night to stay at the House, but no one is ever turned away for financial reasons. In contrast, it costs our organization $135 per night to house a family. Thanks to your support, we never turn a family away because of their inability to pay.

How long do families usually stay at the Seattle House?
It varies greatly, depending on the child’s illness and treatment. Stays may last several weeks to several months and even extend to a year or more.

What do volunteers do?
Volunteers at the Seattle House are vital to our operation as they work the front desk and greet visitors, help in family services and help with cleaning and day-to-day operations. They also organize fundraisers, cook dinners and sponsor activities for the families. You can learn more about volunteering on our Volunteer Page. 

What makes a family eligible to stay at Ronald McDonald House?
To qualify, your child, aged 21 and under, must be admitted to or have an appointment at Seattle Children’s Hospital. You must live at least 45 miles away from Seattle Ronald McDonald House, and have a stay of 4 nights or more.

Who may stay at the Seattle House?
Parents, legal guardians, and other immediate family members are welcome to stay.

Is there a fee to stay at the Seattle Ronald McDonald House?
Family income is not a consideration for admittance. All families are requested to pay $30 a night towards the cost of their stay; however, no one is ever turned away due to financial reasons.

How many people can stay in a room at the Seattle House?
Only one room will be provided to each family, and the maximum occupancy per room is 6 people.

What is in a guest room at the Seattle House?
Rooms in House A and House C each have two twin or queen size beds, a private bathroom, closet space and dresser, television/DVD, telephone with direct phone number and high-speed DSL internet access. House B has 10 self-sufficient apartments reserved for families with children who have received a stem cell or bone marrow transplant.

What security measures are taken to ensure the safety of families?
The safety of our families is very important. At our Seattle location, we do the following:

  • Identification will be required for all registered adults and all adult guests are asked to wear green wristbands while in the House.
  • Every family will be screened for current or past safety or security issues.
  • All families are screened to prevent infectious diseases being brought into the House.
  • Anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult relative or legal guardian.

How do I request a room? How can a family stay at the House in Seattle?Smiling
Up to two weeks before your arrival, you can contact our Housing Office at (206) 838-0610 to get your information into our system. Emergent and unplanned requests are also accepted on a daily basis. Staff will then contact you 24 hours before your arrival to let you know if a room is available. We do not take advance reservations because we never know how long a child may need to be in the hospital. As our House is normally full, we encourage families to call Seattle Guest Services Department at (206) 987-9330 or toll free at 1-866-987-9330 to inquire about other housing options.

When can I check in?
Check-in time is between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. seven days a week.

What can families expect when they arrive at the Seattle Ronald McDonald House?
Within 24 hours of your arrival or when a room becomes available for your family, a Housing Coordinator will contact your family to schedule a time for your family to check into the House. Check in hours are between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. daily. When you arrive, staff will request a photo ID for all adult guests staying in your room. The House Manager will then review the House Rules, ask you to agree to the rules by signing the appropriate paperwork and then will provide a tour of the House.

What is the maximum stay?
As long as a child is being treated at Seattle Children’s Hospital, families are welcome to stay at the Seattle Ronald McDonald House. Eligibility is based on appointment schedules and medical status, and is reviewed at least every 30 days.

Does the Seattle House provide food for families?
House A and House C each have a communal kitchen and pantry of non-perishable foods that are offered for free to all families. Each family has refrigerator and cupboard space where personal food can be stored. Outside volunteer groups regularly visit the House to make dinners for the families. Coke products are available in vending machines and free coffee is available in our pantry. There is no eating allowed in the rooms or anywhere in the House outside of the kitchen and dining room.

Does the Seattle House provide transportation?
There is an RMHC van and volunteer drivers who occasionally take families on outings and shopping trips. Children’s Hospital provides a complimentary shuttle between the House and the hospital by request; however, the hospital is within walking distance.

Are activities planned for families at the Seattle House?
Yes. Groups regularly visit the House to make dinner for the families. There are outings to events and shopping. Movie nights, arts and crafts, visits by Pet Therapy dogs and other activities occur on a regular basis.

Can families have visitors?
Visiting hours are between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. Visitors are welcome, but must sign in and out at the front desk. The children living at the Seattle Ronald McDonald House are medically fragile and highly susceptible to infections. Please do not plan on coming to the House if, within the last month, you or any family members have been exposed to: chicken pox, shingles, measles, tuberculosis, influenza or flu, hepatitis A or any other infectious disease such as e. coli, or if you have any of the following symptoms: sore throat, runny nose, watery eyes, cough, fever, chills, unexplained rash, general aches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea. If you received the flu mist, the anti-flu nose spray vaccine within the last seven days, you may not enter the House.

Our Mission:

At Ronald McDonald House Charities of Western Washington & Alaska, we support seriously ill children and their families. At the Seattle House, we provide a "home-away-from-home" to help families through a difficult time. We also provide a van service for families staying in Anchorage while their children receive medical care. Our IRS tax number or EIN is: 91-1061043.

To view our Privacy Policy, please click here.

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Contact Us

Seattle House & Administrative Offices:

5130 40th Ave NE
Seattle, WA 98105

Phone: 206.838.0600

RMHC at ANMC:

4001 Tudor Centre Drive
Anchorage, AK 99508

Phone: 907.729.4667