Community Support: Recognizing our Campaign Donors

Danny Baldwin, Former Chair of the Board of Directors for RMHC Ottawa and his wife, Bonny Baldwin

“I was the Chair of the Board here at Ronald McDonald House for 8 years, and involved with the house for close to 11 years. I was asked by the past Chair to get involved, and as soon as I stepped foot inside and saw the real impact this House has on families – with the support they receive and the programming offered to them – I knew I had to be involved” said Danny.

“We’ve had to turn away too many families who need the opportunity to stay here, at only 14 rooms right now, and a House that was built 40 years ago, this expansion is long overdue! We are adding 22 new suites to get to a total of 36. Plus more space for families to gather, to come together, to enjoy a meal – as they navigate the hardest days imaginable.

The objective of our expansion is to get rid of the wait list and serve as many families as possible. For this reason, Bonny and I felt it was important to not only give our time but make a financial contribution and hopefully, inspire others to do the same. It’s imperative that our community support this Campaign.”

Danny’s wife, Bonny, has been a longtime volunteer at the House. She shared, “now that Danny has just stepped down as Board Chair, he is becoming a volunteer with me, so you will see him cleaning and helping in the new House!”.

The Expansion: Getting Closer to 36 Suites Everyday

 

On August 10, 2023 we put shovels (and an excavator!) in the ground to officially begin building Our New House! Thank you to everyone who shared in the celebration.

As of February 2024, we have successfully installed a rear-entrance and walkway to the hospital to accommodate the changes out front. Though we are losing our existing traffic circle and parking lot, these are necessary changes as we continue to watch the construction and expansion take place.

We need to grow our House to meet the current needs of our community, aiming to eliminate our waitlist. We are adding 22 more suites and new family living spaces. An average year RMHCO can have around 500 family-visits, with this build we will be able to accommodate 1,303 family-visits annually.

We are making room for ALL families who need a home-away-from-home while their child seeks medical care.

Our parcel of land is large enough that we do not have to move to grow, we are 167 steps door-to-door from CHEO. We currently serve families who are too far to commute; many from Cornwall, Pembroke, Timmins, North Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, and the Canadian North, including Nunavut.

Our carbon-neutral House will be Rick Hansen Foundation Certified, following the highest level of accessibility standards, and built to the LEED Gold standard.

 

GREEN INCLUSIVE COMMUNITY BUILD

The Federal Government is contributing $9.37 million to Ronald McDonald House Charities Ottawa to help build Our New House! The GICB contribution is part of a five year program for green and accessible retrofits, repairs or upgrades of existing public community buildings and construction of new buildings to serve high-needs communities across Canada.

 

ONTARIO PROVINCIAL BUDGET GRANT

The Government of Ontario grants Ronald McDonald House Charities $3.1 million to help build Our New House! In Chapter One, Section B “Working For You”, Pillar Two “Faster Access to Care”: The government is increasing access to high-quality care for patients across Ontario, including care at children’s hospitals.

 

Get In Touch

CHEO relies on Ronald McDonald House to accommodate the families of patients coming from rural, northern, and Indigenous communities. And while the patient population at the hospital continues to grow, our capacity has remained the same for 40 years, at just 14 suites since our original House was built in 1984.

In 2023, our RMHC Ottawa programs saved families over $1.9 million in out-of-pocket costs while we welcomed over 200 families from 183 different communities.

We provide essential social infrastructure to the families of sick or injured children, enabling equitable access to healthcare and filling a critical gap which would otherwise not be filled.

Pictured here, Alex Belanger and his little sister Paisley. Alex has been battling cancer since 2016, spending over 1,170 nights at our Ronald McDonald House. He comes to us from Harty, Ontario over 9 hours north of Ottawa.

Your support will help us cross the finish line on this essential expansion. Contact Cynthia Little at cynthia@rmhottawa.com today.

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Ask us how you can volunteer to make meals