Celebrating Great Leaders Past and Present

Black History Month at RMH-NY

martin luther king jr. quote

If i cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.

                      --Martin Luther King Jr.

Thank goodness February has one more day in it this year.  With so much to celebrate, I don’t think Ronald McDonald House New York could have managed to squeeze it all in with only 28 days on the calendar.

Black friday month resources

Books selected to showcase at RMH-NY's Black History Month Breakfast.

Black History Month is one of the many special moments throughout February that RMH-NY focuses on and each department seems to own a unique celebration technique. Since we celebrated in so many ways, here is a round-up of how Ronald McDonald House New York celebrated Black History Month in 2024.

The Lobby Wall of Historical Figures by the Volunteer Team

Black History Month I am Wall at RMH-NY

Are you a trailblazer like Shirley Chisholm? A Motivator like Barak Obama? Resilient like Harriet Tubman? Heroic like Chadwick Bozeman? A Pioneer like Kamala Harris? or Empowering like Malcolm X?

The “I Am” Wall was featured in the Lobby of the Ronald McDonald House New York by the Volunteers Team. The wall of legendary figures from our past helps our children, most of them battling pediatric cancer or another life-threatening illness and their siblings, see that they can model themselves after these history-making black individuals who shape our past and our present. Their contributions are epic and amazing just like each one of the kids staying at Ronald McDonald House New York.

The volunteer team made sure that each one of our kids knew exactly how special they are with their Black History Month celebratory offering. The wall honors the great figures of the past while inspiring the resilient and incredible leaders of tomorrow.

I am… a leader like Martin Luther King Jr.

I am… determined like Rosa Parks.

I am… a champion like Muhammad Ali.

 i am wall black history month

I am wall at RMH-NY

A Valentines/Black History Mash-up by Wellness

The Blavatnik Family Foundation Wellness Center, the caregiver oasis on the 11th floor of the East 73rd Street House, decided that they would take the major February holidays, roll them all together and do one big celebration on the 14th. The event featured displayed poetry from famous poet Morgan Harper Nichols in honor of Black History Month plus a whole lot of love in celebration of that other holiday that comes in February. You know the one.

Wellness celebration for Valentine's Day

ambiancer in wellness center

celebrating at RMH-NY

Black History at Kings County

Family Room Black History Month

Celebrating Rich Tradition at the Elmhurst Family Room

The Ronald McDonald Family Room at NYC Health + Hospitals: Elmhurst created a giveaway table of goodies that celebrated Black History Month. Books that highlight stories of the past and life in the present day. Bookmarks, bracelets, coloring books, and various stickers exhibit reverence and pride for the month-long jubilee.

The table was topped off with clothing accessories that featured empowering statements to inspire confidence in any young person that might have passed through the Elmhurst Family Room this month. These empowering statements ranged from ‘Black Daughter Future King’ to ‘Future Black King’ and so many others in between.

THe wall at Elmhurst Family Room

RMH-NY Elmhurst family room

Michelle Zhang, the One-Pager Wonder

In what has become a very fun and educational part of most every holiday at RMH-NY, Michelle Zhang, Patient Navigator on our Family Support team and Public Health aficionado, turned the spotlight on one of the lesser known, yet vitally important woman when it comes to healthcare- Henrietta Lacks. Through her personal health struggle, the HeLa cell was created.

To learn more about Henrietta Lacks and her HeLa cell, see Michelle’s incredibly informative one-pager that she released to the staff at the House as yet another way to celebrate and educate during Black History Month.

one pager on Henrietta Lacks


Digital Growth Featured Black History in This Month’s Email Marketing

This year, the House’s Digital Growth team took the themes and ideas proposed by the ‘I Am’ board in the lobby and recreated them to speak to our digital community. Jesse Shayne, our email marketing guru, crafted a message of pride, reverence, and praise to our black heroes that echoes the same feeling coursing through the House in celebratory honor of this month.

email sample from the Digital growth team

Email Marketing Sample from Digital Growth 


Black History Month Breakfast

On February 27th, the Ronald McDonald House New York staff gathered for one final educational and celebratory meal chalked full of artifacts, books, and music representative of black culture that were supplied by Wini, our Chief Operations and Management Officer.

 michelle obama quote

Becoming is never giving up on the idea that there's more growing to be done.

                                      ---Michelle Obama

artifacts for BHM

Breakfast was a great chance for many staff members from different departments to reconnect and say hello. There was time given to anyone with questions for the owner about the artifact collection. Wini recollected that the items were gathered over a period of many years; some were gifts and others were purchased or found on vacations throughout the years.

The breakfast was capped off by a rousing trivia game won by Katie from Development. If you had a good understanding of Black History revolutionaries and today’s pop culture elites, you would have fared well during the morning’s trivia challenge.

Meredith and Team HR hosted the month’s end celebration.

artifacts at RMH-NY

quote from michelle obsama

Your story is what you have, what you will always have, It is something to own.

              --Michelle Obama

books for black history month

In Observance and to Honor History’s Black Changemakers

So much can be taught through remembering our greatest black leaders from the past and those continuing to lead today. By telling their stories, we empower the youngest imaginations to dream big and to inspire confidence.  Then, that confidence will be the seed planted in each of their hearts and this knowledge will fuel them to realize those dreams and achieve the goals they thought maybe they would never get the opportunity to achieve.

At Ronald McDonald House New York

At Ronald McDonald House New York, we honor the great black champions of the past to empower and inspire resilience in our children today.  Every day we remind them through the meals they eat, the buses that take them to and from treatment, and the roof families sleep under every night; we remind them that we are here for them whatever they may need to illuminate the path they walk and to ease the burden of the journey. We remind them that their lives are remarkable, their journeys are very real and very challenging, but their faith and their determination gives them the resilience necessary to fight and win.

Ronald McDonald House New York wants to remind our children and their families, and especially wants to remind YOU that...

You are resilient… like Harriet Tubman.

Harriet Tubman on i am wall

i am wall harriet tubman with flap up

Happy Black History Month from Ronald McDonald House New York!

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