Transforming Gratitude into Action: One Volunteer’s Journey with RMHC

March 21st, 2024

We are fortunate to have incredible volunteers here at RMHC, each uniquely contributing to our mission. Yet, for one volunteer, the supportive and comforting environment of RMHC holds personal meaning.

Nine days after he was born, Jake Grokowski stopped breathing. His family rushed to Rochester, MN where he received an emergency thoracotomy to repair his aorta. During his recovery, the Grokowski’s stayed in the Ronald McDonald House near the hospital, allowing them to prioritize the well-being of their son. Less than a year later, the Grokowski family found themselves once again in Rochester for Jake’s open-heart surgery to repair his mitral valve. And once again, the Ronald McDonald House provided a nurturing and tranquil environment during this difficult time.

“My parents found the House to be an incredible source of love, support, and positivity during a very dark and scary time. They definitely experienced the magic of the RMHC mission! Ever since then, my family has looked for ways to give back to RMHC, whether it was my grandmother making blankets and stuffed animals or helping with various local fundraisers to increase awareness and generate donations. So, even though I don’t remember when my family stayed there, I have seen the magic of the House firsthand!”

Today, Jake gives back to Ronald McDonald Charities by volunteering here in Madison while studying nursing at UW-Madison.

“Volunteering at RMHC in Madison is a great way to help families like mine while learning more about how medical issues impact other individuals and families. I also want to stay connected to the RMHC organization because I believe in its mission.”

Jake’s inspiring story showcases the House’s lifelong impact on families that have experienced the magic at RMHC. Thank you, Jake, for sharing your story and helping us provide the same support to families in Madison.