Many families travel far from home and spend several weeks or months to get treatment for their seriously ill or injured children – a long time to be away or to divide a family. And, for children facing a serious medical crisis, nothing seems scarier than not having mom and dad close by for love and support. A Ronald McDonald House is that “home-away-from-home” for families so they can stay close by their hospitalized child at little or no cost.

Orange County Central Lions members cook for the families at Ronald McDonald House on a regular basis.  RMH will ask different organizations to cook every day either breakfast or dinner. Our club signs up for one of the available dates, plans the menu for approx. 30 to 40 people depending on how many are in the house, purchases all the food which we donate, gathers 3 to 5 volunteers, arrives before the dinning period and stays well after dinning closes to completely clean up.  The kitchen is left cleaner than when we entered it. The house guests always appreciate what we do and the feeling, serving others, is very satisfying



Hosting a Feast from the Heart Frequently Asked Questions


Can I bring my children?

We value teaching younger generations the importance of philanthropy, therefore children 13 years and older are welcome to participate with adult supervision. For younger children please contact the Volunteer Manager for other volunteer opportunities.

What time are meals served?
Breakfast is served at 9:00 am and dinner is served at 6:00 pm.


How many people should I cook for?

Please prepare food for 35 people. This is plenty for families who can personally attend the meal, and left overs for families coming back from the hospital.


How many people will be present at my meal?

This number is hard for us to quantify as we are here for families in their home and on their schedules. We post a weekly timeline notifying families of your meal to help maximize attendance and usually have anywhere from 15- 35 individuals present (children included).


What do I need to bring?

Please bring your volunteer group, happy smiles, and all ingredients you need for your meal. We have a soda machine that sells refreshments for $0.25, some groups choose to bring their own refreshments. This is up to you and your group.


Friendly note: Orange County Ronald McDonald House has a fully equipped kitchen and outdoor grill for you to prepare your meal, therefore there is no need to bring cookware.


What should I cook?

We recommend a healthy, balanced meal with protein, carbohydrates and a fruit/vegetable. Anything you like to prepare for your families, our families will enjoy as well! Taco bars, sandwich bars, and BBQ are very popular. We advise preparing something other than pasta and Italian fare. For additional recommendations please contact the Volunteer Manager.


What should I do when I arrive for my meal?

Please notify staff you have arrived, they or a House Volunteer will assist you and direct you to the kitchen area. We welcome you to our home and ask you to feel comfortable in our space, we would like to note that families staying with us live here and this is their personal space. We thank you in advance for respecting our families during a very difficult time.


What should I do during meal service?

This is based on your groups comfort level; some groups display food buffet style, while some like to serve families. Whichever method is best for your group works for our families, please keep an eye on serving utensils and limiting the potential for transmitting germs. During meal service we recommend your group interact with families, they are thankful for your visit and enjoy friendly conversation. Please be courteous to families and respectful of their state; some families are open and happy to share their stories, while others are more private. Remember, this is their home and comforting space.


What should I do after my meal?

You’re almost done! Please help us maintain our space by cleaning up after your group. This includes washing all dishes and cookware used, disposing trash cans that have been filled (staff or volunteers can direct you to trash receptacle) and sweeping if necessary. Please condense left overs in Tupperware placing labels on containers with meal type and cook date.


Anything else I need to know?

If anyone in your group is experiencing symptoms of a contagious illness, please DO NOT COME! Our families are more sensitive to common illness as their child may be autoimmune suppressed. Lastly, please feel free to take a picture of you and your group but note we do not allow pictures of families. The families we serve are here under stressful circumstances and this is their private space and home, and we thank you for being respectful of their personal space.




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Orange Lions Club
P.O. Box 6592, Orange, CA 92863-6592
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