NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – It’s not unusual to find Alice Yopp in the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Nashville kitchen putting together a meal for the 36 families that stay there nightly.
“If we don’t have a dinner one night, Alice will find a way to feed families,” said Kirra Menees, RMHC Nashville Volunteer Coordinator.
Each of those 36 families can have two, three, four members staying in the room. These numbers are never a deterrent for Alice.
“Alice is always there to fill in those hard to reach dates whether if it’s around Christmas time, or if it’s being around a holiday where we tend to not have as many folks able to help us out Alice is always that person who is the first to say, ‘well you know I can throw something together,’” said Menees.
And Alice will do more than just throw a meal together — as this house provides families of critically ill children an inviting and supportive place to call home.
“If the phone is ringing, she’ll answer the phone. If there’s trash to be taken out, she’ll take the trash out. If the kitchen needs to be cleaned, she’ll clean the kitchen. If a child needs assistance in the playroom she will be more than happy to assist that child. If a family needs something she’s more than happy to assist that family.”
In fact, if you’ve spent any time since 2004 at the Ronald McDonald House, you’ve probably met Alice. She started volunteering as an Alpha Delta Pi sorority alum for the sorority’s philanthropy — and hasn’t stopped since.
“I guess a lot of things keep me coming back. One is helping the families that have sick children and I think that’s very, very important. They all live outside Davidson County, don’t have homes close by and so I just think this is truly a home away from home for those families,” said Alice.
What also keeps her coming back is that she’s lived what these families are living through.
“I had a sick granddaughter several years ago and I just understand um the issues and problems that they have when they live far away from home and have a sick child and I just relate to that situation, and environment and am happy be here and kind of help as much as I can, provide meals, um, sheets, whatever they need I like to get for them and just help them so they have less issues here and can spend more time at the hospital.”
So, Alice does more than just volunteer. She sits on committees and is even on the Ronald McDonald Charities of Nashville Board.
“Alice is a hero because no task is too great for her. She donates her time, she donates her money, she is passionate about caring for the families we serve,” said Menees.
“She’s a hero to a lot of people, to her kids, to our organization to the families that we serve. She’s really, really a wonderful um, person to emulate in our community and we appreciate her very, very much,” said Elizabeth Piercy, RMHC Nashville Executive Director.
So, we honor Alice Yopp as our News 2 Gives Back Hometown Hero presented by TriStar Health for the month of February for her countless hours of dedication and support of critically ill children and their families.