|Ronald McDonald House Milwaukee's Expansion Plans|
When local businesses and organizations partner together for a cause the effect is often exponentially more than the sum of their parts, That is the case with the fourth year of Northwestern Mutual and the Milwaukee Brewers partnering to support the needs of our local Ronald McDonald House.
One in 330 children will be diagnosed with some form of cancer by the time they are 20-years-old. Because treatment plans differ for each of the many forms of the disease, families often have to travel to seek the best care for their child. The costs associated with accommodations, hospitalizations, medication and therapies add up quickly and can be overwhelming for those already battling tough circumstances.
To help alleviate the economic burden, Northwestern Mutual, through its Foundation, is partnering with the Brewers Community Foundation for the Stolen Bases, Happy Faces campaign. Throughout the 2014 major league baseball season, every Milwaukee Brewers stolen base at Miller Park will result in a $1,000 donation to Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin. The promotion is part of Northwestern Mutual's Childhood Cancer Program, and will support expanding housing and services for children and families fighting childhood cancer and other serious illnesses.
"When battling a disease like pediatric cancer, families shouldn't have to worry about where they'll live during treatment," said John Kordsmeier, president, Northwestern Mutual Foundation. "Along with Brewers Community Foundation, we are proud to be able to help The Ronald McDonald House offer families a home away from home while seeking treatment at some of the best hospitals in the world, including one right here in our community."
This is the fourth year that Northwestern Mutual and Brewers Community Foundation have collaborated on a stolen base program. To date, Northwestern Mutual has donated more than $200,000 to the Brewers Community Foundation to focus on youth and their families.
"When we all play on the same team, everyone wins," said Cecelia Gore, executive director, Brewers Community Foundation. "We are thrilled to team up with Northwestern Mutual and Ronald McDonald Charities to help defeat cancer one stolen base at a time."
Two-year-old Emily, who has been battling cancer since she was nine months old, will be featured in signage and game day programs throughout the campaign. During the course of Emily's treatment, the Ronald McDonald House provided a long-term suite that enabled the family to stay together. The nonprofit also offered them the opportunity to participate in fun activities throughout Milwaukee, such as attending Brewers games, which turned Emily into a huge fan.
Proceeds from this campaign directly benefit the Ronald McDonald House in Wauwatosa, which has served more than 35,000 families like Emily's since opening in 1984. It currently has full occupancy with 38 guest rooms—often with a wait list of anywhere from five to 20 families each day.
"The Ronald McDonald House has been at full capacity for the past four years, having to turn away nearly 900 families in 2013 alone due to space constraints," said Ann Petrie, CEO, Ronald McDonald House Charities Eastern Wisconsin. "We're currently working on an extensive expansion plan, and the funds received from the Stolen Bases, Happy Faces campaign will greatly help us in our efforts to double the amount of rooms we have available and provide updated facilities for our guests."