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In 2017, Ollie was a newborn when he had to undergo surgery on his perforated bowel. His mum Meg, dad Lucas and Ollie’s brother Levi travelled from their home in Mt Isa to Townsville and stayed at Ronald McDonald House for ten weeks whilst Ollie recovered in the adjacent Townsville Hospital.
Following their initial stay, The Schutz family have again recently needed the support of the charity due to Ollie requiring complex surgery to save a very badly infected eye.
The volunteers, staff and facilities that have assisted the Schutz family through these difficult times have left Meg and Lucas so thankful for the community funded charity that they knew little about before they themselves needed help.
“It has saved us a lot of money and a lot of stress,” Meg said. “To have a safe place that’s close by to the hospital has been such a blessing."
“We didn’t know any of this was going to happen to Ollie, and so to have somewhere to come for support and family downtime was very important.”
Meg recalls the highlights from her stays are the small acts of kindness from the staff and volunteers, whose efforts have made the house feel more like a home.
“We as a family have felt so supported right from the get go,” she said. “The staff are just really good at knowing us on a personal level."
“We always feel welcome and the volunteers go above and beyond, nothing ever seems like too much trouble.”
Ollie is currently undergoing ongoing treatment after rare bacteria were found in his eye. Surgeries will build up Ollie’s eye structure using amniotic membrane, a procedure which has only been completed once before in Townsville.
Although there are still surgeries ahead, Ollie remains a happy little boy with a smile that melts the hearts of everyone that knows him.