Five years of SickKids partnership

August 02, 2019
Celebrating a milestone in supporting families through our Family Room at the hospital
Ronald Cohn, Sally Ginter and Karen Kinnear in front of Family Room
More than 7,000 families in five years.

Since opening in 2014, the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) Toronto Family Room at SickKids has certainly touched the lives of a lot of families of seriously ill children.

And this week, staff and volunteers from both RMHC Toronto and SickKids gathered to celebrate the Family Room’s fifth anniversary and the difference it is making in the lives of families at the most difficult time in their lives.

“It’s been a place to rejuvenate and regroup while our daughter is healing,” said Marshall Pihulyk.

Marshall and his wife, Ouida, have been using the Family Room on and off since 2014 while their daughter, Sasha, has undergone a series of surgeries for a brain tumour.

“In the Family Room, we can refresh and feel human again,” said Ouida. “It’s a very stressful time when you are waiting for your child and to have the comfort of the Family Room and the company of other families in similar situations is so helpful.”

“Thank you wholeheartedly to RMHC Toronto for providing our families a much-needed space to relax and decompress,” said Dr. Ronald Cohn, SickKids President and CEO, in a tweet after the celebration. “It’s such an important part for the family healing process.”

RMHC Toronto CEO, Sally Ginter, praised SickKids for its continued strong partnership and also applauded the efforts of staff and volunteers.

Volunteers in the Family Room at SickKids.

“It takes true teamwork to operate a Family Room at the highest quality of mission delivery. We are so very fortunate to have such a dedicated and passionate team to consistently care for our RMHC Toronto families.”

The Family Room at SickKids is the largest of the seven Family Rooms operated by RMHC Toronto, and the only one to operate 24/7. There are two Family Rooms at Credit Valley Hospital in Mississauga, one at Health Sciences North in Sudbury, one at Markham Stouffville Hospital, and two at Scarborough Health Network.

Collectively, these Family Rooms supported more than 4,000 families last year, thanks to the support of close to 300 volunteers.

Learn more about RMHC Toronto Family Rooms.

Support our Family Rooms.