Christine McGuire

May 232013

Our son was born premature and spent six weeks in the hospital before coming home. Even though this was almost 10 years ago, I remember clearly the long days we spent there at the NICU. I would arrive as soon as the nursery opened first thing in the morning and would stay until the nurses kicked us out late into the night. We basically lived at the hospital for those six weeks. During that time I remember friends, family, and acquaintances who stopped by to offer support, love, and . . . food. Yes, food. It is amazing what a warm, home-cooked meal can mean when you have been eating hospital cafeteria food for days on end (or forgetting to eat all together). Food can be such a comfort in difficult times.

I think this is part of the reason that I have been enjoying going to the Ronald McDonald House these past couple months. This past Monday was our third time going and it just warms my heart to have the kitchen filled with yummy smells and tasty treats, and my hope is that the food offers the same comfort to the families staying at the House as it did for me so many years ago.

We spent a lovely afternoon on Monday with two other families baking all kinds of tasty goodness–cookies, brownies, and oatmeal chocolate chip bars. The sweet aroma of chocolate filled the kitchen, and we filled platters with the delicious treats for the 16 families staying at the Ronald McDonald House in Oak Lawn. It was a good day.

Happy Kids with Sweet Treats in Hand

Mar 042013

On Saturday, March 2 a group of us headed over to Share Your Soles in Chicago. Volunteers as young as 7 years old were helping to sort and process the large number of shoes that have been recently collected and dropped off at the facility. The shoes that we processed today will be heading over to help individuals living in Nakivale Refugee Settlement in Uganda.

Nakivale is the oldest and largest refugee settlement in Africa, with over 56,000 refugees living there. Of this 56,000, approximately 28,000 are children and young people who have lived there most (if not all) their lives. As is true with most refugee camps, life is devastatingly hard in Nakivale and resources are extremely limited.

While the work we did today may be just a drop of hope in a seemingly endless sea of despair, the shoes, wheelchairs, walkers, crutches, and canes Share Your Soles delivers to these refugees will provide basic needs that they would otherwise go without. So, even though it may be just a drop, it is a drop of hope which will ripple and eventually build into mighty wave of kindness and love for humanity.

No act of kindness is too small. The gift of kindness may start as a small ripple that over time can turn into a tidal wave affecting the lives of many.       –Kevin Heath, CEO More4Kids