Would you walk 1,000 miles? Dwight Barnes is going to do just that!

Many thanks to Joy Clough for designing and maintaining the Join the Journey Home blog!

Dwight, in his own words:

The mission of the Ronald McDonald House Charities has been foremost in my mind for years. Having spent almost 40 years in the McDonald’s restaurant business I saw firsthand what this charity has done for thousands of families. Because of this I am taking on a new initiative in my retirement; It is 1,000 Miles for RMHC New England #jointhejourneyhomeRMHCNE.

In August 2020 I am taking on the ambitious goal of walking 1,000 miles to raise awareness and much needed critical funds for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of New England. I plan to walk 20-25 miles a day starting at the Ronald McDonald House in Boston and making my way across New England visiting the Ronald McDonald Houses in Portland, Bangor, Burlington, Springfield, New Haven and Providence. In training for this walk, I think about the struggles these amazing kids and their families go through. I can’t wait to get started!

Now more than ever, RMHC New England needs our support. COVID-19 has presented us all with challenges we could have never imagined. The implications COVID-19 has on RMHC New England is far reaching. The organization is now faced with significant revenue loss as a result of cancelled or postponed fundraising events due to the pandemic. The children and families of RMHC New England need our community of supporters especially now and I am personally grateful for everyone who has contributed. Even though the world seemed to have stopped, unfortunately childhood illness did not. The need for the compassionate support that RMHC New England provides is greater now more than ever.

For just a minute, imagine yourself in the shoes of a typical family living a normal life. Your biggest concern is how the kids will get to practice and what you’ll be having for dinner tonight. One day, out of nowhere, your child gets sick. Weeks or months of doctor visits and tests confirm the worst: Your child has been diagnosed with what could be a life threatening illness. Your once routine days are shattered and replaced with endless research, doctor visits and the urgency to see your child healthy once again. Seeking the best possible healthcare is now your biggest concern.

For this family and countless others, Boston is at the top of the list of healthcare destinations. It’s one of the most well known and respected places in the country for medical care. These families will face many logistical complications such as where to stay during treatments and how to keep their family together during this difficult time. The Ronald McDonald House has successfully answered those critical questions by providing a home away from home and an atmosphere of care and compassion for families at the most crucial of times.

Having spent time on the Board of RMHC, I have clearly seen the need for additional patient housing in Boston. For the last 3 years the number of requests to stay at The Ronald McDonald House at Boston Harbor has doubled. This has resulted in an ever growing wait list for families seeking housing. We must find a way of avoiding saying “no” to families in need.

This is where you come in! RMHC New England plans to expand services in the Greater Boston Area to fulfill the great need for pediatric housing. Originally this journey of 1000 Miles #JointhejourneyhomeRMHCNE , planned for the late summer of 2020, was to raise awareness and funding to expand RMHCNE services in the Greater Boston Area. Since COVID-19, my fundraising focus shifted to raise much needed funds to support current operations. It will also provide an opportunity to thank the thousands of people throughout New England who support the RMHC Mission and to recognize the sponsors and donors that allow RMHC to make a difference every day. I hope you’ll join me as I make my way through New England during my journey. Please join me in doing whatever you can to support this worthwhile organization.

Thank you,
Dwight Barnes, Deerfield, NH

Dwight Join the Journey Home RMHCNE

Meet Dwight Barnes

Dwight is a retired McDonald’s Owner/Operator and former Board Member of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Eastern New England (RMHCENE). His trek begins in August 2020 and we hope you’ll support him. You can follow along at #jointhejourneyhomeRMHCNE and join Dwight on his journey.

News Coverage

Helping sick kids and their families, 1 step at a time – September 27, 2020
Brattleboro Reformer – Bennington, VT

New Hampshire man walking 1,000 miles for Ronald McDonald House Charities – September 26, 2020
WWLP News 22 – Springfield, MA

Helping sick kids and their families, 1 step at a time – September 25, 2020
Bennington Banner – Bennington, VT

Former McDonald’s restaurant business owner visits Rutland City McDonald’s on 1,000-mile fundraising walk – September 23, 2020
Mountain Times – VT

A NH man is walking his way through VT – September 18, 2020
WCAX – Burlington, VT

Would you walk 1,000 miles for charity? – September 15, 2020
WPTZ NBC5 News Today – Burlington, VT

New Hampshire man trekking 1,000 miles for charity affected by pandemic – September 3, 2020
Bangor Daily News

Walk this way – September 3, 2020
The Hippo

Retired McDonald’s owner stops in Bangor on 1K trek across New England – September 2, 2020
ABC 7 Fox 22

One man set out on a journey to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of New England– September 2, 2020
WABI 5

Dwight Barnes on Cail & Company– September 2, 2020
107.7 The Pulse

If you see a man in Ronald McDonald knee socks walking down the road – September 2, 2020
Q106.5 Bangor, Maine News Update

Bill Nemitz: Here’s to that ‘clown’ on the side of the road – August 27, 2020
Portland Press Herald

Walking toward the golden arches – August 27, 2020
Andover Townsman

Man plans to walk 1,000 miles to help support Ronald McDonald House Charities – August 26, 2020
WGME Channel 13

‘The McDonald’s guy’ arrives in NH on his 1,000-mile trek – August 21, 2020
New Hampshire Union Leader

He’s lovin’ it – August 21, 2020
The Eagle-Tribune

Retired McDonald’s owner heads out on 1,000-mile walk to help critically ill children – August 8, 2020
New Hampshire Union Leader

NIROPE & Friends: Join the Journey Home – August 4, 2020
Studio 10 – WJAR

Deerfield, NH Man Slated to Walk 1,000 Miles for Charity – July 20, 2020
wokq.com

New Hampshire man to walk 1,000 miles for charity – July 17, 2020
NEWS CENTER Maine

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