A local family are calling on the community to make a donation at McDonald's on McHappy day after their 72 day stay at Ronald McDonald House with their unwell baby girl.
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Ingrid and Scott Moores were expecting their second child Pernilla, when they found out she had Trisomy 21 (Down Syndrome) and a blockage in her intestine.
"We were transferred to Westmead Hospital. Because she would have to be operated on as soon as she was born. Because of that, she became a high risk pregnancy," Ms Moores said.
"Because of where we live in Lithgow, we were able to book a place for when she was due at Ronald McDonald House, to be able to stay down there."
At 32 weeks, Ms Moore went into early labour with Pernilla and immediately presented at Westmead Hospital.
"I was in hospital for 10 days where she managed to stayed in, which was good."
Ms Moore said the travel for her husband and four-year-old son took a toll on the family before Ronald McDonald House offered its support.
"It was a four hour round trip for them [Husband and son]. Luckily, we were able to get an earlier place when a spot opened up at Ronald McDonald House," She said.
"My doctor had said that I couldn't go home until she was born, but he was happy for me to stay at Ronald McDonald House because it's so close."
"It was just amazing to be able to stay there and so close and be with my family as well."
Pernilla arrived at 36 weeks, had her operation and stayed in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) for a month before she was able to go home with her family.
It wouldn't be the last experience for the family as Pernilla faced another health issue at eight months old.
"She had a hole in her heart and was operated on in September as well," Ms Moores said.
"So we had another three weeks stay at Ronald McDonald House."
Ms Moores said Ronald McDonald House provided the family with the opportunity to stay together in comfort.
"You can just be by your child's side and just being able to go and have a shower or a little nap to re-energise yourself," She said.
"It feels like a hotel. The rooms are so beautiful and nice."
According to Ms Moores, basic living needs were tended to with the support of staff, volunteers and local businesses who provided meals.
"A lot of the nights, you don't have to think about cooking. You can just all sit down together," She said.
A year and a half after Pernilla entered the world, she is healthy and thriving according to Ms Moores.
"She's 18 months old now and she's crawling, clapping and doing all the cute things," She said.
"Her heart's going really well. And her digestion is all good."
Ms Moores said she encourages locals to support McDonald's during McHappy Day on November 18 as the support they offer makes a difference to families during difficult times.
"People should support it as much as they can," She said.
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