When Mellie White and her mom Melanie stayed at the Ronald McDonald House of Chapel Hill for four months recently, they were surprised to find that our usually well-stocked pantry was looking a little bare. Within minutes, Mellie took to social media…on a mission to stock the pantry.
Mellie wasn’t worried about feeding herself. The 17-year-old has gastroparesis, along with other medical conditions, meaning her stomach doesn’t digest food. And, Mellie said, when a child is hospitalized, their families aren’t thinking about food. “You don’t always know when you’re going to be at the hospital, sometimes it just happens,” she said. “I can’t eat, so I know my mom thinks about food even less.”
But Mellie also understands the way food brings people together. “Food makes it easier for people to come together as a family,” she said, commenting on the community she has experienced while staying at the House.
So, Mellie and Melanie posted to Facebook about their experience staying at the House and about how important it is to all of the families who stay at the House that the pantries are well-stocked.
Teresa Womack and Mrs. Nell Renfrew Sutton from A-List Models and Talent of Raleigh and New Hill Baptist Church saw Mellie’s posts on Facebook and decided to help. With the help of church members, Teresa and Nell collected donations and provided a $400 grocery store gift card to the House. That gift card bought 12 gallons of milk, 6-dozen eggs, 7 pounds of lunchmeat, 8 loaves of bread, and much more.
Through the power of social media, Mellie was able to inspire enough donations to stock the house for an entire week. We are so grateful to Mellie, Melanie, Teresa, Nell and New Hill Baptist Church for their help!