erin taylor kennedy Video Editor

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Directed by Oliver Anderson

When confronted with long-term hospital stays, the mental health of both the patient and their family can often be just as critical as the physical effort of fighting through an illness. For Carolyn Lee and her daughter, Amya Hood, this is where the Ronald McDonald Family Room became a vital part of their journey.

Following Amya's diagnosis with T-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, she and her mother found themselves frequently in the halls of a hospital, and Carolyn found refuge in the Ronald McDonald Family Room. The Family Room programs right inside children’s hospitals allow for parents of hospitalized children the space needed to rest and recharge for the next wave of advocacy, and to connect with others facing similar struggles. From being able to do laundry or even just get a hot cup of coffee, the Family Room was there to provide for Carolyn, all while allowing her to never be more than a few steps away from her daughter's side. These moments of peace helped Carolyn be an even stronger advocate for Amya, and today both mother and daughter are flourishing.