24 January 2020

Home away from home

From first glance the Turner family are just like any other family, but their short history has had its share of challenges. The family’s youngest children, twins Eden and Willow, have both faced health complications since their early years.

“Eden and Willow were born at 23 weeks, so they were quite premature,” mother Jess Turner said.

“Eden needed ongoing care due to her airway issues and eventually needed an airway reconstruction in 2015.”

The twin’s condition required the Bunbury-based family to spend a great deal of time in Perth, a two-hour drive from home. Home away from Home, Ronald McDonald House, made it possible for the family to stick together.

“They took us in as a family for more than 300 days in Perth, they’re a fantastic organisation,” Father Kale Bone said.

“It’s stressful and emotionally exhausting, and in times like that all you want is your family nearby, and having Ronald McDonald House nearby means we were able to keep our family close.

“All the staff at Ronald McDonald House have been there for our family, they’ve celebrated birthdays and Christmas with us.”

By playing Lotterywest games, you've helped Ronald McDonald house renovate their family retreat home in Bunbury with an $85,000 grant. The Turner's attended the re-opening of the revamped home, which is set to provide around 40 families access to the retreat each year. Over the past 18 months, the Bunbury Family Retreat has provided an incredible 412 nights of accommodation to 66 families.

“For people that come from all over the country, it will just feel like home, Mr Bone said.

Lotterywest has been proud to support Home away from Home for almost 20 years, providing grants totalling more than $8.5 million.