The Christmas season has started at Sydney Airport, as the airport today launched its annual Community Christmas Giving Appeal in partnership with Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC).
“We’re thrilled to have chosen RMHC as our charity partner for this year’s appeal, which will raise much needed funds for kids and families in our community who need some Christmas cheer,” Sydney Airport managing director and chief executive officer Kerrie Mather said.
“Christmas is a time for giving and bringing people together, so this is a great opportunity for the airport community – including 29,000 staff working across 800 businesses at Sydney Airport – as well as the travelling public to get involved and raise funds for those in our community who need it most.
“Sydney Airport is also proud to contribute $10,000 to RMHC to kick off this year’s Community Christmas Giving Appeal, in addition to our support in facilitating the appeal.”
McDonald’s Chief Operating Officer Shaun Ruming thanked Sydney Airport for its support.
“This is the one of the largest and longest fundraising campaigns RMHC has ever been involved in,” Mr Ruming said.
“Our Ronald McDonald House program, which is a core program of Ronald McDonald House Charities, helps families across Australia stay close to their children while receiving hospital care. The appeal will benefit every House Chapter, with all funds raised being distributed across our 16 Houses, supporting the thousands of families staying with us annually.
“The funds raised by the appeal will go to Ronald McDonald House Charities’ national program, with a portion of the proceeds directly going to Ronald McDonald House Randwick to assist with the upgrade of the family ‘rest and reflect’ area.”
Today’s launch event was held at the Christmas Giving Tree at the T1 Arrivals forecourt and featured a festive flash mob, as well as Santa Claus.
Over the next six weeks, Sydney Airport will host events, activations, entertainment, a Volkswagen car raffle, collection boxes and merchandise sales to raise money for RMHC.
For the first time in Sydney Airport’s history and in the first event of its kind at a major airport in Australia, Sydney Airport will host a Runway Run along runway 16L 34R to raise awareness about the appeal and RMHC. The fun event will be held on Saturday, 28 November, with a select group of volunteers and supporters sprinting 500 metres down the runway.
In another first, with the support of Hawker Pacific, Sydney Airport and RMHC will host a VIP Hangar Lunch for corporate partners on Friday, 11 December. The event will include a pledge segment for the audience to pledge a night, a week or a month’s accommodation for a family at a Ronald McDonald House.
The REX Family Room will transform the airline’s gate lounge at T2 into a ‘home away from home’ for REX passengers and their families, echoing the comforting environment that RMHC provides to families receiving hospital treatment for a sick child.
Sydney Airport’s terminals will also have a festive feel, with Christmas signage, decorations, entertainment, angels and a special visit from Santa.
“Our long-term community partner Rotary has generously pledged money donated through its airport collection bins and volunteers will be on site collecting donations throughout the appeal,” Ms Mather said.
“Passengers, visitors and staff can also get their Christmas gifts wrapped at the airport for a gold coin donation, with all proceeds going towards RMHC. The gifts will be lovingly wrapped with bespoke wrapping paper featuring RMHC kids’ drawings.”
The Sydney Airport Community Christmas Giving Appeal was launched in 2012 and has raised more than half a million dollars for charity over the past three years.
Ronald McDonald House Charities is a not-for-profit organisation providing services and support to families whose children are receiving treatment for serious illness at 16 Houses across Australia. Funds raised through the Sydney Airport Community Christmas Giving Appeal will be dedicated to upgrading facilities at the Randwick House near Sydney Airport, among other initiatives.
For more information and to donate visit https://everydayhero.com.au/event/communitychristmasgiving