JLS star Aston Merrygold said it was “incredible” to help unveil a new playground made from recycled McDonald’s Happy Meal toys at one of the UK’s Ronald McDonald Houses.
The houses provide free accommodation for families with children staying at nearby hospitals and are supported by fast food company McDonald’s, which has raised more than £100million for the charity since 1989.
Boyband singer Merrygold, 34, opened the new playground at Ronald McDonald House Manchester, which supports families with children at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.
“It was amazing to see exactly how donations from McDonald’s and its customers help support the families staying at the homes,” the singer said.
The singer was able to chat with families staying at the Manchester house (Ronald McDonald House Charities/PA)
“Ronald McDonald House Charities UK provides a home away from home when families need it most.
“As a parent of two myself, I can’t even begin to imagine how difficult it must be for these families.”
McDonald’s also announced its desire to raise an additional £1million this month through customer collection boxes, digital donation channels and the ongoing fundraising efforts of the franchise and its employees.
The playground is made from over a million recycled McDonald’s Happy Meal toys (Ronald McDonald House Charities/PA)
The opening in Manchester follows McDonald’s donation of playgrounds to four Ronald McDonald Houses in London in 2021.
Made from over one million recycled Happy Meal toys, the play areas have been created especially for families staying in the houses and feature an activity path, pyramid lair, wall interactive and an activity table.
Merrygold was also able to meet some of the families staying at the Manchester house and play with some of the children.
The houses help those with children in nearby hospitals to stay close (Ronald McDonald House Charities/PA)
“All the parents and guardians I have met at home in Manchester cannot thank the team enough for the care they have provided during this difficult time,” he said.
“The new playground is an amazing addition to this home; it was so nice to see the kids and their parents playing and spending time together as a family.”