The Eagles continued their Community Monday initiative by visiting the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House, an Eagles Care partner, for a fun night of games ...
On Monday, the Eagles continued their Community Monday initiative by visiting the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House, an Eagles Care partner. General manager Howie Roseman, nose tackle Bennie Logan, safety Chris Maragos, wide receiver Jordan Matthews, quarterback Mark Sanchez and SWOOP hosted a family game night, playing board games and visiting with families who were staying at the house.
Every day families are delivered news that their child has been diagnosed with a serious illness. What's worse is that a number of these families have to travel hours for the cutting-edge treatment that's not available at home or to see the only specialist who understands their son or daughter's condition. The Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House provides families a temporary residence with the comforts of home, while also offering the support of staff and volunteers.
The event was called "Family Game Night" for a reason. There weren't only smiles on the faces of all the children, but the parents were also beaming from ear to ear. They were able to see their child smile and this would not have been possible if it were not for the help of the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House.
The children loved seeing the players as one father, Wilber Romero, explained.
"We watch football all of the time on TV. To see them in person is something special," said Romero, whose son, also named Wilber, is a cancer patient.
The Romero family arrived at the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House from Columbus, Ohio. Romero's doctors back home in Ohio told him about a special treatment that was available in Philadelphia. Right away, he began searching for a way to stay in Philly.
"You do everything for family," the elder Romero said.
The Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House provides families with more than just a home. The House gives families food, transportation, recreation and activities. It also provides safety. This is an important feature according to Chris Callanan, the director of events and corporate development at the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House.
"Comfort and support, really, that's the biggest thing for us," Callanan said. "We try to take care of the worries that these families have while they are staying in Philadelphia, so that they can take care of their children."
Callanan started at the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House as a volunteer. The ability to help families is what inspired him to work at the House.
"Once you walk through the door of the Ronald McDonald House you really notice how important this place is to all of these families," he said with a smile.
The Eagles saw first-hand what Callanan meant when they were at the family game night. Roseman loved seeing and hearing everything that the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House had to offer for the families. The players shared his excitement as well.
"Sometimes, I think that we get more out of it than the people that we're trying to help, and that's a good thing," Sanchez said.
The entire family atmosphere was alive in the room which is what makes the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House so special.
"It's about putting a smile on the kids' faces and getting their mind off of all of the treatment," Logan said. "It's some time for them have a little fun."
Isn't that what families are for, to pick you up when you're feeling a little down. The Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House does exactly this - for the children and the parents.
If you are interested in supporting the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House, the best ways are to volunteer or donations are always gratefully accepted. Please visit the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House for more information!