Franchising World

By Soraya Rivera-Moya, Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Florida  


It’s a time when we can make a profound impact on the lives of those in need, particularly families with sick children staying at Ronald McDonald House.    As a franchise owner, you have a unique opportunity to make a positive impact on the communities you serve. Beyond business success, engaging in philanthropy and actively participating in community initiatives can foster goodwill, build stronger customer relationships and boost employee morale.  

Here are a few tips and strategies on how to get started with your own philanthropy initiatives this holiday season and all year long: 

1. Identify your local needs: identify specific needs in your community. Learn about demographics, socio economic factors and local challenges. Align your philanthropic initiatives to local issues and how this can make a more significant impact.  

2. Build a partnership: Partnering with local nonprofits, community centers and government agencies. Attend community meetings and events to network and gather information. These can create mutually beneficial relationships. Think about what makes your franchise unique. Do you offer products or services that could address specific local needs?  

3. Employee involvement: Involve your staff in the decision-making and volunteering. They may have insights and passions related to local needs. Consider holding brainstorming sessions and surveys among your staff. This can foster a sense of pride and teamwork.

4. Prioritize and set goals: Once you have a list of potential initiatives, prioritize them based on their feasibility, alignment with your brand and potential impact. Set clear, measurable goals for your philanthropic efforts.

5. Plan and implement: Develop a detailed plan for your chosen initiative, including budget, timeline and responsible parties. Ensure that your initiative is well organized and sustainable in the long term.  

6. Communicate your philanthropic mission: Have transparent communication with customers and the community about efforts.  This can inspire others to get involved and support your franchise. 

7. Celebrate success and inspiring stories: Celebrate your philanthropic achievements with the communities and staff. Share ideas of recognition and celebrations which can foster a sense of pride and motivation and how collective efforts can create a more compassionate and thriving community. 

Partnering with organizations like Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Florida provides an opportunity for companies to support families with sick children by being together at the house during challenging times. The Ronald McDonald House offers a welcoming and comfortable environment for families to stay near the hospital while their child receives medical treatment. This helps reduce stress and allows parents to be close to their child when they need them the most.

Meet the Mina Family

In April 2021, Mina and his wife, Manar, traveled with their two young children, Noah, 3 and Adam, 8 from Cairo, Egypt to West Palm Beach, Florida to visit friends for vacation. Unfortunately, while on vacation, 3-year-old Noah had a burn accident. A microwavable soup spilled on his chest and part of his arms, causing a third-degree burn. After being rushed to the local hospital, it was recommended they travel to Miami to seek treatment at the Miami Burn Center located in Jackson Memorial Hospital. The family was unable to be airlifted due to harsh weather conditions. Scared and nervous, they quickly drove towards a city they had never been to and left their other son, Adam, behind. Noah was admitted and suffered severe burns to his chest and arms which required extensive treatment. Back in West Palm Beach, Adam stayed in the care of friends and it was the first time the family had to be separated. The days quickly turned into weeks and when the treatment required months of doctor visits, it was clear the family needed to move to Miami in order to stay together and close to Noah as he underwent treatment. The unexpected costs and the emotional toll the accident had on the family was stressful. Fortunately, the family was referred to RMHC of South Florida where they were able to safely check-in and stay together as Noah began healing. “We are grateful for the lovely staff and volunteers that treat us and take care of us like the nicest family members,” said Mina. Today, Noah is slowly healing, and the family has been able to stay together and close to the pediatric hospital where he is being treated.

As a franchise owner, you have a unique opportunity to make a positive impact on the communities you serve.

Volunteers not only offer practical help but also emotional support, joy and laughter to the children and families. Each month, hundreds of individuals share their time and talent to make sure families experience the comforts of home while caring for their hospitalized children. Typical individual and corporate volunteering includes preparing a meal or activity for families, cleaning, painting, participating in any special events, collecting wish list items, preparing care kit packages, or hosting a fundraiser.  

Community engagement and philanthropy can be a win-win situation for franchise owners, their businesses and the communities they serve. Take that first step towards a more socially responsible and engaged franchise.

Due to a high demand, the Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Florida will be building a new house to help more families and eliminate its waiting list. To learn more on the Capital Campaign “Hope Has a New Home”, such as how to volunteer, schedule an activity for families and or donate to the Ronald McDonald House, visit www.rmhcsouthflorida. org or call 305-324-5683.


Soraya Rivera-Moya is the executive director of Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Florida.