LOS ANGELES, March 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- McDonald's restaurants across Southern California are lacing up their big red shoes and asking guests to join them in supporting the annual Walk for Kids event, benefitting Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Southern California (RMHCSC). Now through April 7, 2013, Southland residents who visit a participating McDonald's restaurant will have the opportunity to support Walk for Kids by purchasing a "Big Red Shoe" for $1. The iconic paper shoes will then be displayed with the donor's name in a designated area of the restaurant. One hundred percent of the proceeds directly benefit RMHCSC programs, including six Ronald McDonald Houses; two Ronald McDonald Family Rooms; and Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times®.
Last year, "Big Red Shoe" sales generated more than $330,000 towards the total $1.8 million raised at Walk for Kids. This year, the McDonald's Operators' Association of Southern California (MOASC) has increased its fundraising target to $500,000 in the hopes of helping the charity reach the event's $2 million goal. The non-competitive 5k pledge walk is RMHCSC's biggest fundraising event of the year and raises awareness and funds to ensure its Houses, Family Rooms and Camp continue to be able to provide comfort, care and support for families with critically-ill children. Walkers gather Sunday, April 7 at 8 a.m. at four locations simultaneously: Exposition Park in Los Angeles, Honda Center in Orange County, Shoreline Park in Long Beach and Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario. A fifth Walk for Kids event will be held on Saturday, June 1, 2013 at California Living Museum in Bakersfield.
"Walk for Kids is a very exciting time of year for all of us at McDonald's," said Michael Mangione, Jr., McDonald's owner/operator and president of MOASC. "It's an opportunity for our restaurants and guests to come together and support an amazing cause. It's a truly collaborative effort and will help ensure families with critically-ill children find the comfort, care and support they need during difficult times."
Ronald McDonald Houses, located in Los Angeles, Orange, Long Beach, Loma Linda, Pasadena and Bakersfield, offer low cost, and often free, temporary housing for families of seriously ill children receiving treatment at nearby hospitals and medical centers. Ronald McDonald Family Rooms at CHOC Children's in Orange and CHOC Children's at Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo serve as an oasis inside the hospital for parents with children in the pediatric intensive care and neonatal intensive care units. Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times provides children with cancer and their siblings an opportunity to process their diagnosis and restore their self-esteem in the therapeutic environment of the great outdoors at no cost.
About Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Southern California
For more than 35 years, Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Southern California (RMHCSC) programs have been committed to providing comfort, care and support to children and families through a variety of wellness and educational programs across Inyo, Kern, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. With the help of volunteers, RMHCSC operates six Ronald McDonald Houses in Bakersfield, Loma Linda, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Orange and Pasadena and two Ronald McDonald Family Rooms, which help seriously-ill children and their families stay together during difficult times. The organization is also the only Ronald McDonald House Charities chapter that operates the cost-free, medically supervised, year-round Camp Ronald McDonald For Good Times®, designed to help children rediscover their self-esteem, self-reliance and independence after experiencing cancer. Within Southern California, RMHCSC has provided nearly $17 million in funding through its Community Grants Board to deserving non-profits and funds four college scholarship programs that have awarded more than $4.2 million to exemplary high school students. More information about RMHCSC and its programs can be found at www.rmhcsc.org or on Facebook and Twitter.
SOURCE Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern California