NewsCovering Kern County


Bakersfield Ronald McDonald House expanding to help more local families in their time of need

Posted at 5:34 PM, May 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-16 20:34:12-04

It’s been on the Memorial Hospital campus for nine years and now it is getting an upgrade. In order to help more local families stay closer to loved ones in the hospital The Ronald McDonald house is expanding their house.


“Pediatric health care has changed a lot in our community in the last nine years and so to better serve the families it was time to expand and remodel our existing structure,” said Scarlett Sabin, the director of the Bakersfield Ronald McDonald House. After nine years on the Memorial Hospital campus, the Bakersfield Ronald McDonald house is expanding into two homes. Next door to the existing home, they will build another house with three more guest rooms and remodel the existing home, adding a napping room.


Sabin says it’s important to keep families close to their children in the hospital. “There have been studies done that show when a family is right there to be interactive with their child during their health care that it can help in the process of the child getting better,” said Sabin. For about three years the Bakersfield Ronald McDonald staff had been talking about expanding. So they partnered with Habitat for Humanity and on Monday they will officially break ground on the expansion. The additions and the upgrades are expected to cost around $500,000. And officials hope it will be up and running within six months.          


While the house is under construction families staying with them will be put up in the Marriott Hotel so they are not in the middle of a construction zone. “It comforts me knowing that our families are still gonna be taken care of during the expansion but just going forward to know that they are gonna have a beautiful place to be while their child is hospitalized and there’s nothing more important than being close to your child at that time when they need you there the most,” said Sabin. She also says  the additions will help an additional 500 guests annually.


The groundbreaking for the expansion is set for 1 p.m. on May 21st; and construction is expected to start 30 days after the groundbreaking.