Grain from growers can help ill children

Claire TyrrellCountryman

Growers can now donate a portion of their grain to Ronald McDonald House (RMH).

The not-for-profit organisation joined CBH's charity register this year to help raise funds for families of ill children staying at their facility.

About 400 WA charities are signed up to CBH's Load Donation program, which can be accessed via CBH's Grower Service Centre.

RMH relationship and development manager Rebecca Stott said the partnership with CBH was aimed at helping children from rural and regional areas.

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"Most people from regional WA will know at least one person who has utilised the services of Ronald McDonald House - this is a charity that resonates with country families," she said. "The partnership with CBH will help us to not only expand our presence in regional WA but is an ideal way to connect the regional communities with the house and an opportunity for people to support us in the most basic way.

"Many of our families are farming families and it is a great way for them to be able to support us after we have helped them."

Ms Stott said the house provided a "home away from home" for families of seriously ill regional children undergoing treatment for cancer and other life threatening illnesses at Princess Margaret Hospital.

Six-year-old Kaius Pearson, of Albany, was diagnosed with T-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma this year.

Kaius' mother, Natalie, said Ronald McDonald House provided a stable base and support network while Kaius underwent treatment.

"We lived there from January to September this year while Kaius went to Princess Margaret Hospital," she said.

"It was a place next to the hospital where our family could come and stay and we could all be together.

"We don't really have anyone who lives in Perth, so we don't know what we would have done without it."

Kaius' father, Joshua, brother Baydne, 5, and sister Amaya, 3, spent some time in the house supporting Kaius. Since RMH opened in 1990, more than 3000 families have passed through its doors.

Voluntary grain donations can be made to RMH through Loadnet. RMH is also on CBH's charity register to receive funds from overloaded grain forfeited through the Harvest Mass Management Scheme.

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