OAK BROOK, IL--(Marketwired - Nov 4, 2015) - Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC), a global non-profit that creates, finds and supports programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children, is asking people everywhere to help keep families with critically-ill children close to each other and the medical care their child needs to heal by giving the gift of togetherness. The old adage "home is where the heart is" particularly strikes true for families who spend the holiday season at pediatric medical facilities. That is why, each year, RMHC celebrates the Season of Giving from November through December by encouraging online donations at www.rmhc.org that can help keep families close when they need it most all year long.

"Togetherness is the greatest gift you could give families with critically-ill children," said Sheila Musolino, chief operating officer, RMHC. "RMHC serves families whose children are the sickest and must travel the farthest to access the life-saving medical care they need. Research shows that when a child is in need of critical care, having family nearby helps them heal and cope better. A contribution to RMHC during the holiday season helps us ensure these families can administer a healthy dose of hugs, smiles and laughter all year long."

Each year, through programs, like Ronald McDonald House, RMHC helps nearly six million children and families around the world find comfort and access to critical health services. For families who travel so their child can receive medical treatment, a donation of as little as $80 can help them stay together and close to each other and the care they need. As individuals, businesses and community groups look for opportunities to give back this season, RMHC is reminding supporters that a small donation goes a long way. For families it could mean:

  • A space for children to play with others experiencing similar challenges;
  • Strengthened coping abilities for parents;
  • A comfortable lodging alternative for parents who need to remain close to the hospital; and
  • Providing parents with higher quality sleep so they are better able to participate in decisions about their child's care.

Throughout the Season of Giving, supporters can make donations online at www.rmhc.org and contact their local chapter for more ways to get involved. RMHC celebrates the giving spirit and is encouraging fans to post photos in support of RMHC families on its Facebook and Twitter using #KeepingFamiliesClose.

About Ronald McDonald House Charities
Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC), a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) corporation, creates, finds and supports programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children. Through its global network of 300 Chapters in more than 63 countries and regions, its three core programs, the Ronald McDonald House, the Ronald McDonald Family Room and the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile, and millions of dollars in grants to support children's programs worldwide, RMHC provides stability and vital resources to families so they can get and keep their children healthy and happy. All RMHC-operated and supported programs, enable family-centered care, provide a bridge to quality health care, are a vital part of the health care continuum and give children and families the time they need to heal and cope better together.