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Feeding families during pandemic is tough for some

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WICS/WRSP) — Feeding your family in the time of COVID-19 is not easy for everyone.

A lot of people are seeking help from the community to put a meal on the table....

Watch the video at NewsChannel20.com...
CEO Amber Kaylor talking to News Channel 20 about Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois, which is relying on the community to feed families they help.

Even organizations, including the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois, are relying on the community to feed families they help.

"We still want to be able to provide those meals, to our families, so that's not something they have to worry about,” Amber Kaylor said, the chief executive officer.

The nonprofit organization’s mission is to support families while their child is receiving medical care. Feeding them is just one portion of what they do for them all year round.

Kaylor said they provide three meals a day and snacks for them, with or without a pandemic.

Before COVID-19, they had a guest chef program that would cook a meal for families. They had to indefinitely suspend that program because of COVID-19.

RMHC of Central Illinois did receive a grant from the Community Foundation of Lincoln Land to help alleviate some of the burden. They exhausted those funds.

Kaylor said since June, they’ve been relying on donations.

"We're relying on people who are making donations of having a meal catered to the house or just simply making a cash donation and that's really what we need right now," Kaylor said.

RMHC of Central Illinois currently has around eight families in the house they support. They can usually house more families, but they are at capacity right now due to COVID-19 restrictions...

Click here to find out how to donate to the Ronald McDonald House Charities.

by Tessa Bentulan,
Originally published Wednesday, September 30th 2020 on NewsChannel20.com

Read the full article at NewsChannel20.com...

Allstate Insurance’s Inaugural Golf Outing Supports Ronald McDonald House!

Last week, Allstate Insurance Agent: Shawn Miller hosted the office's inaugural golf outing, which benefited Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois! Thanks to Shawn, his staff, and all participants for supporting us!

See the original Facebook post...

Last week, Allstate Insurance Agent: Shawn Miller hosted the office's inaugural golf outing, which benefited Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois! Thanks to Shawn, his staff, and all participants for supporting us!

From L-R: Development Director Kendyl Wear; Chief Executive Officer Amber Kaylor; Allstate Insurance Agent: Shawn Miller; golf outing participant.

Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Central Illinois announces Amber Kaylor as New CEO

Amber Kaylor

New CEO Amber Kaylor

After an extensive search, the Board of Directors of Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Central Illinois (RMHCCI) has announced Amber Kaylor as new CEO for their non-profit organization which spans 29 counties across central Illinois.

Kaylor, who currently serves as CEO of Children's Museum of Illinois, brings nearly ten years of non-profit experience to RMHCCI including her background as Director of Resource Development for United Way of Decatur & Mid-Illinois and Coordinator of Multicultural Recruitment for Millikin University. In addition to her professional experience, Kaylor holds an MBA and a BS in Management and Organizational Leadership, both from Millikin University.

"Kaylor's business acumen and leadership training couple with her dynamic personality and passion for our mission make her a perfect fit for CEO," notes Board Chair Melissa Skinner-Liberman. "Her addition to our team will allow us to remain mission-focused during this unique time for our communities. Our charity has a strong base of support from our staff, Board of Directors, volunteers, and community partners, and I expect this transition to occur smoothly without any interruption to our mission."

"The impact of the charity is profound and lasts a lifetime. Leading RMHCCI is an honor, and I am excited to be a part of the team as we continue to serve children and families when they need us the most," says Kaylor. RMHCCI's core programs are anchored by their two Ronald McDonald Houses® located in Springfield (since 1986) and Peoria (opened December 2019). Kaylor will assume this leadership role effective August 31 and may be reached at ak@rmhc-centralillinois.org, 217-528-3314 or 309-401-2525.

Our Heartfelt Goodbye to Kelly Thompson, CEO

What makes Kelly special is not only the time we have spent with her; rather it is her spirit, her very presence, and her tenacious affection for the organization and everyone she encounters. She simply believes that an individual can change the lives of people for the better – something she demonstrates each and every day.Today, all of us at Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois lean on these wise words of advice from Dr. Seuss. It is with heavy hearts that we prepare for the departure of our CEO Kelly Thompson. Kelly, who has been our leader and dear friend for nearly a decade, is embarking on a new adventure and beginning her next chapter. For that, we have the utmost admiration, understanding, and happiness.

While it may be cliché to refer to someone as “one of a kind,” that compliment is not lost on anyone that has ever met Kelly. We will always cherish our memories of her, which are far too countless to mention here. What makes Kelly special is not only the time we have spent with her; rather it is her spirit, her very presence, and her tenacious affection for the organization and everyone she encounters. She simply believes that an individual can change the lives of people for the better – something she demonstrates each and every day. It’s in her very nature to be kind, compassionate, consistent, and caring, all tinged with great optimism and faith.

There are not enough words to adequately articulate our appreciation, affection, and our great sense of loss. What we can say to Kelly is simply, Thank you. We send you and your family off with our very best hopes and wishes, and a reminder to always keep your weather-eye on the horizon.

For all of us at RMHCCI – our staff, Board, volunteers, partners, donors, and friends – we may not be crying because it’s over – but to be sure, we are still a little sad. Thank you for being part of an amazing decade of hope with us!

CEO Kelly Thompson is embarking on a new adventure and beginning her next chapter. For that, we have the utmost admiration, understanding, and happiness.

Important COVID-19 Information – check back for updates

We have re-opened the Peoria House to family stays.

Peoria RMH Guests must follow additional Temporary Standards (PDF), and answer additional screening questions.

For questions, call the Peoria RMH at 309-401-2525.

We have re-opened the Springfield House to family stays.

The Springfield House is not taking Guest Applications through our website at this time.

To stay at the Springfield Ronald McDonald House, you must be referred by the hospital where your child is being treated. Please contact your hospital’s nurse manager or social worker to learn more about the referral process.

For questions, call the Springfield RMH at 217-528-3314.

For updates, please check our website regularly.

This post was updated on June 30, 2020.

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois awarded COVID-19 Response Fund Grant

We are grateful to the Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln for selecting us as one of the recent recipients of the COVID-19 Response Fund for the Greater Capital Region of Illinois grant! This support will help us continue to provide meals to the families we are serving! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

See the original post on Facebook...

Eleven organizations were awarded in this round, one of which was Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois, which was awarded $19,000:

The Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln and United Way of Central Illinois announced a fifth round of COVID-19 Response Fund grant recipients [on April 24, 2020].

In total, $125,500 was awarded to the following organizations: The Salvation Army Clear Lake Corps and Community Center, $25,000; Springfield Branch-NAACP, $25,000; Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois, $19,000; The Outlet, $18,000; Pregnancy Care Center of Springfield, Inc., $10,000; YMCA of Springfield, $6,500; Panhandle Food Pantry, Raymond, $6,000; Jacksonville Area Community Food Center, $5,000; Pure Haven Family Resource Center, $5,000; Kemmerer Village, Assumption, $4,500 and Capital City Coalition, $1,500.

Grants are administered in partnership with the Pandemic Community Advisory Group.

Donors have now contributed and pledged over $530,000 to the COVID-19 Response Fund, including $50,000 in seed funding from the Community Foundation and United Way and $250,000 from the Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund.

Read the full story at SJ-R.com...

A very special thank you to our all-volunteer Board of Directors!

As the end of National Volunteer Month has come, we want to extend a very special thank you to our all-volunteer Board of Directors! They spend countless hours providing guidance and direction for all areas of our charity’s operations, and because of them, we are able to continue to fulfill our mission each and everyday, even during this unprecedented pandemic.

Thank you to ALL of our volunteers! We can’t wait to see you again.

A few quick and easy ideas that help support the many families we serve at the Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Central Illinois.

Wondering how you can help during this time? Here are a few quick and easy ideas that help support the many families we serve at the Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Central Illinois. Pick your favorite then share the ideas with your family and friends. Together, we can make a difference.

1. Host a Facebook Fundraiser

Facebook makes it easy to set up a fundraiser from home for causes that are important to you. Simply go to facebook.com/fundraisers, select Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois as the non-profit and follow the instructions listed.

2. Shop Our Wishlists

Check out the wishlists for both central Illinois Houses at rmhc-centralillinois.org/house-wish-list. This includes everyday items for families to use and more. All shopping can be done from your favorite spot on the couch and you can have supplies shipped straight to our Houses!

3. Host a Benefit or Event

Of course, if you plan anything over the next few weeks it would have to be a virtual event, but that doesn’t mean it can’t have a huge impact. Ask your favorite local band if they want to help host a virtual concert, or perhaps you can meet up with your friends on Zoom for a Trivia style fundraiser event. Now is also a great time to start planning for when you CAN get together with your friends and family again. Start planning to throw a neighborhood fundraiser party, community benefit, or 5K runs/walks.

Simple or big… everything you do can make a difference.

Questions?

Contact our Development Director, Kendyl Wear at kw@rmhc-centralillinois.org or call 217-528-3314 ext. 148 in Springfield or 309-401-2525 in Peoria. Also remember, we still have Peoria House room sponsorships available!

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