On 13th May 2019, Ronald McDonald House New York (RMH-NY) held its 27th Annual Gala to celebrate 40 years of serving families and children fighting cancer. The event was attended by 800 guests; including families, staff, volunteers, supporters and honorees. RMH-NY’s President and CEO, Ruth Browne SD, described the critical nature of the care and support provided by the House and how it influences the outcome for families and children. The range of practical and emotional facilities offered by RMH-NY is second to none. The House provides up to 400 people a night the help they need each and every day of the year.
Chair of the Board, Harris Diamond, demonstrated the inclusivity afforded by the House in a simple statistic: 40% of its occupants, the families, come from outside of the United States. During the evening the House honored several patrons who had given substantial and long standing support to RMH-NY. Their vision and role in determining the value of the House and delivering significant resources to improve services and outcome was truly impressive. All of the honorees and their volunteering staff fully deserved their accolades. Among the honorees were Stacey Bendet of alice + olivia, Chuck Davis of Stone Point Capital LLC and Robin Hayes of JetBlue Airlines. Robin, his staff and his company have devoted thousands and thousands of hours on the
ground in Houses across the USA and in particular New York in the service of families. It was announced his airline would also be supporting families by delivering a number of families to and from their centers of treatment. Robin spoke of the beginnings of his relationship to RMH-NY, in part through the Brown family and their son Jack. Richard Brown also spoke to the audience on the importance of the integrated care provide by the House and its staff and volunteers. Richard explained that he and his family including Jack’s siblings had the privilege of the care and love offered at the House for over a year. And beyond the provision of survival as a family the House had empowered them to ‘thrive’ under the most difficult of circumstances.
Richard attended the Gala in advance of the 2019 Jack’s Pack events in NYC, which commence with the half marathon in Central Park on May 18th. The team consisting of 90 British Police Officers culminate their trip with a ‘Plane Pull’ against teams from the USA at JFK Airport on May 21st. The plane pull was only possible because of generous support and organization of JetBlue who, perhaps foolishly, allow several hundred service personal to manhandle one of their aircraft. Robin Hayes is to be thanked for his vision, leadership and sense of British fun in hosting the event. RMH-NY is to be congratulated on their service to families, including those from the UK, who seek necessary treatments for Neuroblastoma in New York. All of those families come to New York because hope tends to have expired for their child elsewhere.