It’s the last week before Christmas.
If you’re running around, trying to find the perfect gift, I want you to stop. Step back and breathe.
If you’re frantically searching online for the latest gadget or gizmo, walk away from the computer.
If you’re convinced that your tween or teen will have high expectations, relax. Don’t stress.
The truth is, all they want for Christmas is… you.
Put those wallets away! The most popular gift for teens this season doesn’t have a price tag. A new survey from Ronald McDonald House Charities Canada (RMHC) found that what your teen wants most this holiday season is actually closer to home than you think – spending quality time together as a family is the most important thing to teens. And contrary to popular belief, only 1% of teens surveyed said giving gifts ranked high on their must-haves for the holiday.
Does this ring true in your house?
While my boys aren’t teens (yet!), I can still appreciate the feeling of love, comfort and security that comes from knowing my family is close. But this year, 497 families of sick children will rely on a Ronald McDonald House each night to keep them together for the holidays. Tonight, we are grateful to be home, together.
What is your Gratitude Number? Our Gratitude Number helps us give the gift of keeping families close. Simply add up the ages of your family members – then donate that amount to RMHC. It’s a fun and easy way to show your support!
Why RMHC? It’s simple. Did you know that 70% of Canadian families live outside a city with a children’s hospital? So when a child gets sick, they often have to travel hours to get treatment. The 15 Ronald McDonald Houses across Canada give families a place to stay close to the hospital where their child is being treated. And, as a parent, keeping families together at Christmas is very close to my heart.
Now, you may be shaking your head at the above statistic, thinking, there’s no way that so many families don’t have access to a children’s hospital. But let me put it in perspective for you: the population of the Region of Peel is 1.5 million. Last year, when Reid needed an emergency appendectomy, we were told that for the nearest available children’s hospital, we’d have to travel to Hamilton or Toronto.
A population of 1.5 million, without access to a children’s hospital.
The night of the surgery, I stayed at Ronald McDonald House Hamilton. And I am thankful every single day that they were there for me, keeping me close to my son as he recovered.
This holiday season, find your Gratitude Number by adding up the ages of your family members. Then visit GratitudeNumber.ca to create your very own Gratitude Number photo, and share it on social media. Show your Gratitude by asking your family and friends to pitch in to donate!
Wishing you all a safe and healthy holiday, celebrating love, togetherness, and peace.