Cleveland Chefs Feed RMH Families

At the Ronald McDonald House, volunteer groups come together each night to cook a delicious homemade meal that feeds as many as 55 families. This longstanding program allows volunteers to witness firsthand the Ronald McDonald House mission, which in turn has led to many fruitful relationships between RMH and the Cleveland community. In 2017, groups served 563 meals to families staying at the House. The meals, provided at no cost, save families much needed time and money. This allows them to better care for their child who is receiving medical treatment in area hospitals.

Cleveland is a foodie town. And several award-winning chefs call it home. How could we as an organization provide more high quality and healthful meals for our families and tap into Cleveland’s rich food resource. Also, while RMH has a history of impressive support from business and community groups that cook and donate meals, some groups have asked for more guidance in preparing a meal to feed 100 people staying at the House.Welcome the new Family Meal program, RISE & Dine  

Through the RISE & Dine program, groups donate money to participate. Local chefs are recruited to plan the menu and purchase the food. The group then comes together in the RMH kitchen to cook with the chef, serve the meal, and dine with the families staying at the House. Not only does the group enjoy a delicious meal, they get a culinary lesson too.

You can change people’s lives here, or at least make things go smoother. Kind words go far, along with a hug, or a ‘How are you doing?’ It’s amazing. RISE and Dine has probably done more for me than I have for them.
— April Thompson, RISE & Dine Chef

The program currently has three core chefs; April Thompson, Andy Newman, and Sonia Steele. John Selick, visiting RISE & Dine Chef of the American Culinary Federation, and his family previously stayed at a Ronald McDonald House while his son was being treated for complications from autism. Recognizing the benefits the House has for families in a time of need, John helped co-create the program with RMH. RISE & Dine also utilizes local celebrity chefs to participate. On March 29, Matt Fish from Melt Bar & Grilled, who’s been featured on the Food Network, conducted a RISE & Dine at the House and made his most popular sandwich, the Parmageddon, which won USA Today's Best Ballpark Food contest, comparing stadium eats in Major League parks in 2016.

Read the full RISE & Dine article by The Plain Dealer and get some great recipes created by our chefs.

Volunteers from Verizon of Mentor join Melt in cooking a dinner for families staying at the Ronald McDonald House of Cleveland.

Want to bring a group to the House to cook a meal? Visit our group volunteer page for more information.