Ronald McDonald House a 'godsend' for local family

From left to right- Emma, Dana and Jordyn Fairhead with a 2017 McHappy Day Big Mac box designed by Emma. Photo: Jake Dietsch.
From left to right- Emma, Dana and Jordyn Fairhead with a 2017 McHappy Day Big Mac box designed by Emma. Photo: Jake Dietsch.

A local teenager battling cancer and her family, are encouraging members of the community to get behind the Ronald McDonald House ahead of this year's McHappy Day.

Esperance 17 year-old Jordyn Fairhead was diagnosed with synovial sarcoma, a rare type of cancer, in March 2017.

The diagnosis meant the family had to spend five months in Perth for Jordyn to receive treatment at Princess Margaret Hospital.

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Jordyn’s mother Dana said the house was an “absolute godsend” for their family.

“It just meant that we could all stay together and it was a financial burden off our shoulders as well,” she said.

“I don’t know what we would have done without it.”

Mrs Fairhead said the house provided ongoing tutoring support for Jordyn, due to the time she missed from school. 

Last year, Jordyn’s nine year-old sister Emma (now 11) designed one of the six drawings and messages displayed on Big Mac boxes sold on McHappy Day across Australia.

Emma also sold glitter pens, raising between $3000 and $4000 for the house. 

“I wanted to help them in some way to say thank you,” she said.

McHappy Day has been held annually since 1991 to raise funds for the Ronald McDonald House Charity.

The day has raised more than $42 million for the charity, with over $4 million raised last year.

This year’s McHappy Day will be held on Saturday, November, 17, with every $2 from each Big Mac sold on the day going directly to the charity. 

Mrs Fairhead said she would definitely encourage people to get involved with the day.

“If you can get down to a McDonalds on the 17th, when it is McHappy day, and either buy or donate some money, you know it’s going to a really good cause,” she said.

“It was very tough on all of us last year and we are still trying to get back to normal.

“But if it wasn’t for the house, I don’t know where we would be, it would be a very different story.

“We’re forever grateful.”

For more on Jordyn’s journey click here.