05 Apr Jaslene Spells Hero: Y-O-U!
You gave hope to this spelling bee champ and her family.
Six-year-old Jaslene can do a lot of things. She can make you laugh. She can spell more words than anyone in her class. And she can eat a LOT of donuts (her favorite food!).
But Jaslene can’t walk or lift her arms. Her mom and dad hope that one day, she will. That’s why the three of them make the long trips back and forth to a hospital across the country … and why they rely on Ronald McDonald House® — and YOU.
Searching for Hope
Jaslene lives with a condition that prevents her joints from moving.
She’s had it all her life. Jaslene was born with club feet and club hands, and her arms and legs were permanently bent. Though doctors tried to treat the condition, her little body remained twisted and bent for her first two years.
Then, her mom and dad, Maria and Jose, learned about a specialist who could help. They were thrilled, and began dreaming of a brighter future for their little girl — one in which she could walk. There was only one problem. The hospital where Jaslene needed to be was states away. Where would her family stay — for weeks — while Jaslene underwent surgeries and treatment?
“We couldn’t stay in a hotel for that long,” Maria explains. “It cost too much. We wouldn’t be able to make the trip.”
Then you came to the rescue.
Because of your generous donations, Jaslene and her family could stay at Ronald McDonald House, right by the hospital. They made the first of many trips, and Jaslene started treatment.
Now, 14 surgeries later, Maria and Jose have hope. “Every time we come out here, we see better results,” Maria says, a smile on her face.
Comfort and Care
Jaslene is a cheerful little girl and the best reader and speller at school. But life can be stressful for her parents — between navigating life with a wheelchair, going to doctor appointments, taking care of two other daughters, constant travel to the hospital, and managing bills and a house back home. Thankfully, you help take care of that, too, by showering the family with love and care at Ronald McDonald House.
“We just love it here,” Maria says. “Ronald McDonald House is more than just a place to us. This is perfect, wonderful, amazing help.”
They enjoy their private room, family mealtimes, and fun activities. It’s easy to see how every time you give, you help a family like Jaslene’s take their mind off their struggles — and stay strong. Maria explains, “I have to stay as positive and strong as I can, because I know if I’m not strong, then Jaslene’s not strong. I have to give her that energy.”
Maria and her family don’t take anything about the House for granted. They’re grateful to be together, dreaming of a day when Jaslene can walk beside them. Despite everything they’re going through, Maria says, “Jaslene feels very blessed. We are blessed.”
Families like Jaslene’s are burdened with so much worry. Doesn’t it feel good to know you can help? Thank you for being a hero to families like theirs!