Individual Volunteer Opportunities
Join us in helping families get better together.
As a volunteer at a Ronald McDonald House or Ronald McDonald Family Room, you make a direct and immediate impact on children and families in their moment of greatest need.
Whether you’re welcoming families at the front desk or working behind the scenes to wash laundry so new families can rest in a freshly made bed, you’re helping families focus on what matters most – their sick children.
Help Families Feel at Home
We need volunteers with a passion for our mission and the flexibility to help with a variety of tasks to keep things running smoothly.
Some typical volunteer responsibilities include:
- Welcoming guests and answering phones at the front desk
- Giving House tours to volunteer groups and other guests
- Answering family questions about the House or Family Room and helping them find supplies or other resources
- Cleaning, restocking, and organizing common spaces, kitchens, and storage areas
- Preparing guest rooms for the arrival of new families
- Simple household tasks, such as doing laundry or changing light bulbs
The first step to becoming an individual volunteer is to submit an application to your chosen location below. You will then begin the onboarding process and attend a location-specific orientation to learn more about being a volunteer and to answer any questions you may have.
During volunteer onboarding, you will:
- Complete a background check
- Attend an in-person orientation session at the House or Family Room
- Review House, Family Room, and Charity policies and procedures
- Tour the House or Family Room
- Shadow current volunteers to learn the responsibilities of your role
- Select your monthly volunteer shifts
Once you have completed onboarding, you will be scheduled for your first volunteer shift. We’re excited to have you join the team!
Please note that all House, Family Room, and Hospitality a la Carte volunteers must:
- Be at least 18 years old
- Complete all onboarding steps, including a background check
- Commit to at least one year of regular volunteer shifts
- Family Room and Hospitality a la Carte volunteers must also complete the hospital’s volunteer application and onboarding process
When I welcome the volunteer groups, I usually add that our job is to try to make lunch a safe time for families to enjoy a few minutes away from stress as their children are being treated for all kinds of medical issues. If I can do anything to help create a safe place, then my day is better for it.”
The Volunteer Experience
Every day’s to-do list is a little different at each Ronald McDonald House or Family Room – that’s one of the things that makes it fun! No matter what tasks they do though, our dedicated and passionate volunteers are critical to helping us serve families and making them feel at home each and every day.
While not every volunteer task involves interacting directly with families, they are all critical to helping families feel at home.
Please keep in mind that while some families love having someone to talk to, others prefer to keep to themselves. We ask that all volunteers respect every family’s space and privacy. This includes not taking or sharing photographs of families at the Houses and Family Rooms.
Submit Your Application
If you’ve decided that volunteering is the right fit for you, take the first step and click your preferred location below to begin the application process.
- Ronald McDonald House near Advocate Children’s Hospital
- Ronald McDonald Family Room in Edward Hospital
- Ronald McDonald House near Loyola Medical Center
- Ronald McDonald House near Lurie Children’s
- Ronald McDonald House near Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage Hospital
- Ronald McDonald House near UChicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital
A few of our locations also offer unique volunteer roles.
Meal Helper at Ronald McDonald House near Lurie Children’s
Meal Helpers assist our chefs and help lead Culinary Hearts volunteer groups while they cook at the House. Meal Helpers also help volunteers find supplies, learn their way around the kitchen, and keep everything organized during the meal.
RMHC Hospitality a la Carte
Our volunteer-staffed RMHC Hospitality a la Carte program at Lurie Children’s and Comer Children’s is a mini Ronald McDonald House on wheels that allows us to bring snacks, games, and smiles directly to families while they are in the hospital.
Please note – Hospitality a la Carte volunteers at Lurie Children’s must complete the Ronald McDonald House near Lurie Children’s volunteer form and the Lurie Children’s Hospital volunteer application. Hospitality a la Carte volunteers at Comer Children’s should contact Comer Children’s Hospital directly to volunteer.
And to distract them from everything else they have going on.”