By: Ann Jerome
Here in Austin, we’re managing to sweat our way through one of the hottest summers on record. We will actually set the new heat record on Wednesday of this week as we continue to log temperatures over the 100 degree mark. Fortunately, some of us have been taking some heat breaks through travel and getting to cooler, wetter climates and loving every minute of it!
Last week, Missy, Derrick and I were in Chicago for the RMHC International Conference and experienced beautiful daytime temps in the 70’s while connecting with colleagues from all over the world. This special conference happens every other year and is the most amazing way to learn new ways of promoting awareness of our mission and becoming re-inspired from seeing the Ronald McDonald House Charities mission in action all over the world. One of the highlights from the conference was hearing the survival stories of the staff, volunteers and families who were at the Ronald McDonald Houses in New Zealand and Japan this past year after each country endured huge natural disasters. The spirit and compassionate care at each of these Ronald McDonald Houses continued to be delivered to the families of hospitalized children despite the obstacles and challenges.
And, of course, while we there to be represent RMHC-Austin and to network with our peers – each of us took some personal time to be inspired by the wonderful city of Chicago including a weekend at Lollapalooza, a Cubs game, morning runs along the lake, and of course a “must see” visit to the wonderful newly installed 26 foot tall statue of Marilyn Monroe that had just been unveiled along the Miracle Mile on Michigan Avenue. You just couldn’t help but smile when you saw this beautiful iconic image so much larger than life with such a blissful happy look on her face.
So, while summer heat continues to bear down on us in Austin – know that we are refreshed and ready to head into the fall with creative ideas to better serve the families and children who need us at Austin’s Ronald McDonald House and Family Rooms.