This House of Ronald McDonald is Trying to Help Rare Disease Families

When Dacarri Davis stepped on a piece of glass in the bathroom, he had no idea his life was going to change.

Neosporin didn’t help the glass cut, because something still felt off with his foot.

When his mom took him to urgent care, he was given a strong antibiotic for what might have been a serious infection. The antibiotic acted as a catalyst for what was already brewing in Dacarri. His body began forming blisters and swelling on his face.

Today, Dacarri suffers from Stevens-Johnson syndrome, a rare disease that makes your skin appear as burned. To learn more, click here.

When this rare disease was uncovered in Dacarri, he ended up at the burn unit at Shands Hospital in Tallahassee. His grandmother Cassaundra Brockman, volunteered to care for Dacarri so his mother could stay home and take care of her other two children.

In the meantime, Brockman, who is disabled, learned that she was eligible for a room at Ronald McDonald House but was put on a massive wait list. She used Dacarri’s hospital room for housing as she waited. Other nights, she found solace and sleep in the hospital’s lobby or family rooms.

Shands Hospital, who prides itself on its care for children, offers challenges for people like Brockman. Ronald McDonald House has been known to house people from Shands who cannot otherwise afford housing, but the increase in population and never ending wait list is making it extremely difficult for people to find a bed.

There’s a sense of familial bonding among guests at the house who are in similar situations and they have the convenience of using a tram to get to Shands. Last year, the house had zero availability for 492 families. They are doing everything they can to improve conditions however, by making the night manager’s room available for families and if the money situation gets better, adding a whole bunch of other rooms.

A week after Dacarri moved into Shands, Brockman was lucky enough to move into Ronald McDonald house, close to her grandson.

“I used to have to think about where I was going to sleep at night and what I was going to do,” said brockman. “I can come back to the Ronald McDonald House and have a secure place. It’s like a little oasis in the middle of turmoil.”

Being around other families with similar hardships make things easier for Brockman. She could take comfort in the prayers and support of others.

Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email