Ronald McDonald House Charities

By Dorothy Lu and Diana Scafuto

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“The mission of Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) is to create, find and support programs that directly improve the health and wellbeing of children.”

Not many people can say that they have not heard of the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC). “RMHC has a global network of 322 Ronald McDonald Houses, 161 Ronald McDonald Family Rooms, and 43 Ronald McDonald Care Mobiles.” This basically means Ronald McDonald Houses are all over the world. RMHC helps comfort families in times of need and makes it easier for them to stay by their child’s sides during treatments and surgeries. As the organization itself says, “while RMHC may not be able to make the medicine taste better or erase the pain of a much-needed treatment, we can help lessen the burden for nearly nine-million families each and every year.” This shows how helpful and considerate the charity is and just how effective they are. The idea of the Ronald McDonald House Charities was created by “Dr. Audrey Evans, Philadelphia Eagles player Fred Hill (whose daughter, Kim, had leukemia), Leonard Tose, owner of the Eagles, Jim Murray, the Eagles’ general manager, and Ed Rensi, the McDonald’s regional manager.” (Ronald McDonald House Charities) These five people revolutionized other people's thoughts on charity and comfort in difficult times. They helped make a very well-known and successful charity. Out of 23 students, 20 knew what RMHC was. Clearly, RMHC is a well-known charity which many people know about for the charity’s kindness and compassion. Ronald McDonald House Charities is a generous, compassionate foundation that helps millions of families around the globe every year.

1. What is the issue/cause RMHC supports?

Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) is an organization that supports families with children who have cancer. They help to "support the health and well-being of children and families." In addition, RMHC helps other organizations that have the same main goal as them - to directly improve the health of children all over the world. Every year, the organization has something called “Global Grants”, which are grants of more than one million dollars to a group of chosen charities. Recently this year, they have “awarded $2.2 million to 9 organizations focused directly on the health and well-being of children."


The Ronald McDonald House Charities program gives families somewhere to live which is close to their hospital, so that the family of a patient may be able to stay by their child’s side during each and every single treatment. Having family by your side to support you can be very important, and RMHC helps so that families can stay near their children. “A cancer diagnosis can be very shocking and frightening,” as Neil Izenberg, author of Human Diseases and Conditions states. It is essential to have family there to help a patient get through surgeries and treatments. RMHC makes that easier for millions of families around the world.

2. How did RMHC begin and grow into what it is now?

The Ronald McDonalds House is a non-profit organization with “322 houses in 57 countries and regions.” There’s no way anyone could pull that off by themselves. RMHC gets help and donations from many people, including McDonald’s, the community, and other generous donors. They would not be as successful as they are today without these donations. They also get help from hospitals as said on their official website, “We rely on our strong relationships with the medical community to provide access to health care.”


Also stated on their website, “Although the McDonald's System is our largest corporate partner, RMHC is a non-profit corporation and no one community can solely fund the growth of RMHC programs and services…” This shows that RMHC grew tremendously since the beginning and needed and still needs lots of funding. This charity became a well known charity around the world because of McDonald’s, and other advertising. Without the help of generous donors, McDonald’s, and even little donations from people in the community, they could never be as far in growth as they are today.

3. What does RMHC do for the community?

RMHC provides hospitalized children’s families a place to stay near the hospital. This program also donates money to families who are struggling with prices of surgery and special treatments. The charity gives grants to nonprofit organizations that also focus on the needs of children and even gives scholarships to students across the U.S. RMHC has a global network of 58 chapters and 3 core programs. They also have many Ronald McDonald Houses, Ronald McDonald Family Rooms, and Ronald McDonald Care Mobiles located all over the globe. Ronald McDonald House Charities can now be found in 62 countries and regions around the world, according to the Ronald McDonald website. “They provide stability and resources to families so they can get and keep their children healthy and happy.”


The organization says that they “can help lessen the burden for nearly nine-million families each and every year.” RMHC has been helping families worldwide who are struggling with a sick child. A child who is sick needs the right treatment, and although the hospital may be many miles away from home, there will certainly be a Ronald McDonald House there to keep the family by the child’s side for every single surgery or treatment. Many families who have lived in a Ronald McDonald House have enjoyed their experiences there. Most have agreed that in addition to good help, the staff and other families in the Ronald McDonald Houses are kind and provide a friendly community for everyone there.

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4. How effective is RMHC in accomplishing its goals?

The Ronald McDonald House Charities have helped families who have sick children. One disease includes childhood cancer which takes a huge toll on families. This charity houses families who have children diagnosed with diseases like cancer. They provide hospitality, toiletries, appliances, and all the basic necessities. They give security and resources to every family that lives there. According to RMHC’s official website, “Every year RMHC helps nearly nine million families stay together.” This is amazing and shows just how effective The Ronald McDonald House Charities is.


Many families are eternally grateful and dependant on RMHC to make their lives better. As described in Living With Childhood Cancer by Leigh A. Woznick, and Carol D. Goodheart, cancer brings families together as an army to try and fight it. In order to do that, you need proper living and a friendly environment. The Ronald McDonald House does all of that for millions of families a year. This charity is extremely effective in giving to all those in need of a place to stay nearby their child. Many people participate in this charity and support it. To read about some families’ incredible stories on how RMHC affected them, check out the RMHC blog! (www.rmhc.org/rmhc-blog)

Kyler's Ronald McDonald House Story
Francesca's Story: RMHC Italy

Works Cited

"Charity Navigator Rating - Ronald McDonald House Charities." Charity Navigator. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Apr. 2015.


Izenberg, Neil. "Cancer." Human Diseases and Conditions. Vol. 1. New York: Scribner/Thomson/Gale, 2000. Print.


Marketwired. "Ronald McDonald House Charities Celebrates 40 Years, Honors First Families and Leaders from Around the World." EBSCO. EBSCO Industries, 11 Oct. 2014. Web. 14 Apr. 2015.


"Ronald McDonald House Charities Awards More Than $2.2 Million to Support Children and Pediatric Care Around the World." Marketwire. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Apr. 2015.


"Ronald McDonald House Charities :: McDonalds.com." Ronald McDonald House Charities :: McDonalds.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Apr. 2015.


“Ronald McDonald House Charities.” Ronald McDonald House Charities. Mcdonald’s, 2015. Web. 14 April 2015.


Woznick, Leigh A., and Carol D. Goodheart. Living with Childhood Cancer: A Practical Guide to Help Families Cope. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2002. Print.