It’s incredible to think that RMHC has been in Australia for 40 years. That’s two generations of children and families coming through our doors. It’s four decades to develop an intimate understanding of the emotional, financial, physical and social challenges these families face. It’s allowed us to see what works, innovate in areas we know we can improve, all while offering stability and familiarity to the families we support.
A Year of Firsts and Anniversaries
In 2021, we celebrated several firsts and anniversaries. Each was a chance to reflect on the great work our team has accomplished over the years, and a reminder of why we must keep pushing to be better – because giving our all to families is what really matters.
First ‘Fun on Four’ Family Room opens in Perth Children’s Hospital
Our Family Rooms allow families to take a break from the stresses of the wards. Now RMHC WA has taken the concept further, creating a modern, interactive space that thoughtfully caters to the needs of every age group – from grandparents and teens to toddlers and babies.
- Arts and crafts zone
- Cinema room
- Book bunker
- Espresso coffee station
- Teen Den: arcade and video games
- Explorer Zone: STEM, construction, sensory and imaginative play
- Soft play area for toddlers
Ride for Sick Kids WA celebrates 10 years
Ride for Sick Kids WA celebrated its 10th year of raising money for RMHC WA. The team raised a record-breaking $500,000 on this golden ride, cycling 500 kms across Western Australia. Since 2011, the annual event has raised over $3.3 million for sick kids and their families in the region.
“Ride for Sick Kids epitomises Western Australians going the extra mile, literally, to support families from every corner of the state. This is a challenging ride for participants, who get a real sense of the distance our families travel for critical medical care of their child.”
CEO, RMHC WA
Ronald McDonald House South Brisbane expands
$2.7 million funded
Six apartments; two studios
One study nook; one day stay area
In May, the Minister of Health, the Hon Greg Hunt, opened a new level within the multi-level South Brisbane House. Five years after the House was opened, its new Level 8 will support larger families, immunosuppressed patients, long-term guests, and children with high sensory needs. It includes a study nook and a day stay area for regional families arriving early or departing late.
Ronald McDonald Family Retreat Palm Cove turns 10
In 2011, RMHC opened its Palm Cove Family Retreat in the beautiful grounds of the family-friendly Mantra Amphora Resort. Over 10 years, the apartment has given hundreds of families a place to reset and reconnect among the natural surrounds of the Great Barrier Reef. The apartment is situated on the beach with access to pools, spas and restaurants.
New South Wales
Ronald McDonald House Westmead turns 40
In 1981, RMHC opened its first House in Camperdown, before relocating to Westmead in 1995. Ronald McDonald House Westmead is now one of the biggest House in the country and supports 2,000 families a year, with 60 bedrooms, six kitchens, and multiple indoor and outdoor living and dining spaces. It’s supported by 200 staff and volunteers.
20-year-old Elijah stayed at the House with his family for over 300 nights after he was seriously injured in a traumatic skydiving accident. Elijah spoke about what the House means to him and his family at the 40th celebration event.
“They do all they can to ensure life is as good as it can be, when you’re at your lowest. Ronald McDonald House is more than a roof, four walls and a bed. It is a House of hope.”
Ronald McDonald House Randwick turns 30
Over 20,000 families supported
9,375 nights accommodation
Ronald McDonald House Randwick celebrated 30 years of supporting families, with an all-day ceremony of fun, appreciation and reflection. All its most important VIPs were included – from kids and families to volunteers and Board members, staff (past and present), partners and long-time supporters – in this landmark occasion.
Left to right: Simone Daher (CEO of Ronald McDonald House Sydney) and Caroyln Townsend (President of the Board of Management, Ronald McDonald House Sydney)
Ronald McDonald House Newcastle turns 30
10,000 families supported
167,470 nights accommodation
It’s been 30 years since the Newcastle House first opened its doors in 1991. The House has grown from eight to 12 rooms and six self-contained units. Families stay an average of seven nights with 419 nights being the longest stay for a family. More than 1,000 big-hearted people have volunteered their time since 1991, providing hundreds of thousands of hours of support to help families.
Ross Bingham, CEO of Ronald McDonald House Charities Northern NSW
Ronald McDonald House Parkville turns 35
Second Ronald McDonald House in Australia
500,000+ nights accommodation
Parkville was the second Ronald McDonald House to open in Australia. Since it opened in 1986, it has grown from an 18-room facility across four terrace houses into a 52-room haven for families. Some of these families were sleeping in their cars or splitting time between home and relatives before the House opened. We can’t thank our donors, supporters, volunteers and staff enough for making this special anniversary possible.