RMHC Malta_run by Inspire RMHC to help children with learning difficulties, disabilities and socially excluded youngsters with their homework.

The Malta Chapter of the Ronald McDonald House Charities, a global organisation dedicated to providing resources to improve children’s health and wellbeing, has been set up.

The Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) has been helping children around the world since 1974. Present in more than 60 countries and regions, RMHC helps fight illness by providing families with housing near a hospitalised child or by bringing basic medical and dental care to vulnerable communities. The RMHC network of local chapters brought support to 5.7 million families in 2014.

As its first project, RMHC Malta will set up a home to house a team trained to help children with learning difficulties, disabilities and socially excluded youngsters with their homework.

This will be run by the Inspire Foundation in the northern part of Malta in an area not currently served by Inspire. It will host Homework Support Groups to help children and youngsters who have fallen behind at school. Children will receive two hourly sessions of homework support a week and sessions will be delivered by qualified, experienced tutors in small groups of three.

Malcolm Booker, Chairman of RMHC (Malta) said: “Through its presence in Malta, RMHC will be diversifying its global scope and focusing its core efforts on providing educational support to children with learning difficulties. I am confident that this project will yield positive results in Malta, as it has done in so many countries around the world. As a first project we have partnered with Inspire because it has valuable expertise on learning difficulties and disabilities on a larger scale.”

“The number of children and young adults who are failing in core subjects is on the increase,” explained Inspire’s CEO Antonello Gauci. “This is sometimes even worse because of the socio-economic situation that children find themselves in. These sessions will therefore focus on improving the skills required to help them perform better in Mathematics and English. Intervention will be delivered for free, to children who are identified as having specific and non – specific learning difficulties and come from a problematic social and educational background.”

Around the world, the Ronald McDonald House Charities has enjoyed the support of the McDonald’s system – owners, operators, suppliers, employees and customers – since it was established in 1974. Locally RMHC’s leading benefactor will be Premier Restaurants Malta, the operator of Malta and Gozo’s nine McDonald’s restaurants.

“We have been supporting the community in various ways over the last 20 years,” said Victor Tedesco, Managing Director of Premier Restaurants Malta and Premier Capital plc, the developmental licencee for McDonald’s in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Greece and Malta.

“Our group has supported RMHC for many years. RMHC’s mobile care centre programme in Latvia, supported by our sister company Premier Restaurants Latvia, has delivered free healthcare to more than 15,000 children in rural parts of the country since 2011. RMHC Malta will now give us added opportunity to support our favourite charity.”

McDonald’s in Malta will help RMHC in three ways. It will pledge a contribution from every Happy Meal sold in its restaurants and place money boxes on all counters in its restaurants.

All proceeds from McDonald’s annual McHappy Day Campaign throughout November will be directed to RHMC. McHappy Day is McDonald’s major global charity initiative aimed at raising funds and awareness of children’s causes.