Supporting Kids with Cancer and Their Families

The Ronald McDonald House has long been providing a comfortable and hopeful place for families to stay while their kids get pediatric treatment at area hospitals. The nonprofit organization has support centers all across the country, offering temporary lodging, transportation, meals and social services to those who need to travel far and stay close by as their child receives care.

The Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House was the first, born from the vision of pediatric oncologist Dr. Audrey E. Evans in the 1970s. She was watching families sleep in hospitals while their kids received care and knew there had to be a more compassionate way to support them. She partnered with the Philadelphia Eagles’ General Manager Jimmy Murray, who happened to be advocating for one of his players whose daughter was undergoing treatment for leukemia. Murray approached McDonald’s, an Eagles advertiser, for help, and the first Ronald McDonald House opened on October 15, 1974.

Today, there are two Ronald McDonald Houses in the City of Brotherly Love. Three Ronald McDonald Family Rooms offer support and respite at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children. The week-long Ronald McDonald Camp invites children with cancer and their siblings for an adventure in the Poconos every August. And the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile provides oral healthcare to kids in North Philadelphia.

As part of the Culture of Caring at the Sonesta Philadelphia Rittenhouse Square, the hotel habitually provides spare rooms to families staying in Philadelphia for pediatric care. And this year—the 45th anniversary of the organization’s founding—the team further showed their support by participating in a nationwide “Show Your Stripes Day.” To honor the work of the Ronald McDonald House, the Sonesta team wore red and white stripes and were happy to explain their colorful wardrobe to anyone who would listen.

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