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May 8 McHappy Day supporting Southlake, Ronald McDonald House

Fill your tummy and your heart as a community staple returns for a 30th year with proceeds supporting local charities and families in need across the country.
Southlake Foundation president and CEO Jennifer Klotz-Ritter with McDonald's restaurant owner Peter Miller at the Davis location for 2023 McHappy Day.

Fill your tummy and your heart as a community staple returns for a 30th year with proceeds supporting local charities and families in need across the country. 

McDonald's restaurant in Newmarket and across York Region are supporting McDonald’s Canada's McHappy Day on May 8, with a portion of the sales from menu items directed to Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) and other children’s charities in the country.

Over the past 30 events, it has helped support more than 468,000 families from communities across Canada by raising $92.5 million.

“Across Canada, the impact of McHappy Day is felt every day by families who rely on RMHC to stay close to their sick child during the most unexpected and challenging time in their lives," said Kate Horton, president and CEO of RMHC. "While the impact of our national mission is far-reaching, the need for RMHC is great and growing.” 

Newmarket community members, including Mayor John Taylor, town councillors, first responders, Southlake Foundation CEO Jennifer Ritter, and NewmarketToday editor Debora Kelly lent a hand last year by taking on a role at the restaurant for a portion of the day. 

“McHappy Day is an amazing initiative, and Southlake Foundation is a partner with several locations across the York Region who generously donate funds to the hospital,” said Dionne Malcolm, director of strategic marketing communications and brand development at Southlake Foundation. “Last year, McHappy Day locations raised over $22,500 collectively, with donations supporting Southlake’s maternal child program.”

Proceeds go to support 16 Ronald McDonald houses and 17 Ronald McDonald family rooms in Canada to give about 26,000 families a place to stay together when they must travel for their sick child's treatment.

McDonald’s Canada is supporting the launch with a McHappy Day merchandise line with Peace Collective, a Canadian clothing brand. A portion of proceeds from each sale will go directly to RMHC.

“Thanks to our founding and forever partner, McDonald's, and this collaboration with Peace Collective, Canadians can make a meaningful difference for families in their community by ordering their favourite menu items on May 8 or by purchasing this limited-edition merch,” said Horton.

The need for funds continues to grow as RMHC is only meeting 20 per cent of the need for the service. Each year, more than 3,000 families never make it off RMHC waitlists, with an estimated 45,000 Canadian families left without the comfort and support of RMHC.

"McHappy Day provides critical funding for RMHC to continue to be there for families," she said.