Hunter Douglas Brings “Shades of Happiness” to Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times

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Hundreds of children and their siblings staying in Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Southern California compete in inspirational artwork contest

The contest was about the experience to come together with these kids, a great company and technology to create a better environment.

“What Makes You Happy?” That is the question Hunter Douglas recently asked hundreds of children and their siblings staying in Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Southern California (RMHCSC) houses and affiliated hospitals, and attending Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times in Apple Canyon Center, California. The question was part of a special “Shades of Happiness” original drawing contest held in conjunction with RMHCSC. The competition invited participants ages 18 and under to create unique artwork to answer that compelling question, and during the contest’s three-month timeframe, nearly 200 original pieces of artwork were submitted. Humanistic and artistic, the winning designs were used as inspiration for a series of Hunter Douglas window shades that were custom-printed for a new, state-of-the-art dining facility at Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times.

Highlighted by a palette of bright and cheerful colors, the winning entries include inspirational drawings from Miranda (age 8), Danielle (13), Shaelin (9), Xavier (11), Brianna (17), Kestral (13), Abigail (16), Belen (13) and Leslie (14). Winners received a prize basket along with the pride of seeing their designs brought to life.

“We thought it was such a great idea to put original artwork on shade fabric,” said Edgardo Caceres, RA, RDI, NCIDQ and senior associate at Los Angeles architecture firm Gensler, who sat on the contest judging panel. “More than that, it was about the experience to come together with these kids, a great company and technology to create a better environment.”

The panel of entry judges included Caceres, Hillary Jaye, brand design director, Gensler Los Angeles; Robert Leleux, editor, Domino Magazine; Elaine Griffin, author of the bestselling Design Rules: The Insider’s Guide to Becoming Your Own Decorator; Sarah Orth, executive director, Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times; Stephanie Tichenor, Hunter Douglas senior marketing manager; and Donna Lobosco, director, Hunter Douglas brand communications. Submissions were evaluated submissions on originality/creativity (50%) and relevance to contest theme (50%).

Overall, the panel was impressed with the manner in which participants tied all of the elements of the contest together. Judges noted how several designs were sophisticated and fun, and took notice of how each made a visual connection to RMHCSC. While was all entries were unique – some simple, some complex – each told a story that was impactful, emotional and optimistic. Considering the journey of dealing with cancer can be a trying time for so many children and their families, the panel found it inspiring to see a large number of designs incorporating family, friends and scenes from nature.

“The drawings reminded us of a spiritual space with illuminated components – like a church with stained glass,” said Jaye. “All of the drawings captured the feeling of happiness in nature. We loved the idea of incorporating nature in the space.”

Dr. Stuart Siegel, M.D., Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times founder, agreed that the Shades of Happiness competition brought with it a refreshing outlook to the camp experience. “Shades of Happiness was a perfect name because it embodies what camp is,” said Siegel. “When I walked into the dining hall for the first time, the shades were the first thing that I noticed because they gave the place so much warmth and character. It gave just the right message and I was thrilled.”

Executive Director Sarah Orth noted that the new facility is larger, handicap accessible, and the addition of the attractive drawings on high performance Hunter Douglas roller shade fabrics gives the space added elements of beauty and functionality. Siegel and the leadership team at Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times had been searching for an improved design to replace the old, 1940s-era dining structure for nearly a decade.

With the addition of the new dining facility, Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times will now be able to handle 25 percent more campers. With youthful inspiration from the Shades of Happiness campaign, Hunter Douglas’ unique window treatments and customized version of corporate philanthropy will contribute to the charity’s success for years to come.

The Shades of Happiness video can be viewed at, youtube.com/user/Hunterdouglas. A complete gallery of contest submissions and winning entries may be viewed at http://shadesofhappiness.com/gallery. To learn more about Hunter Douglas, visit http://www.hunterdouglas.com, and to find out more about RMHCSC, visit http://www.rmhcsc.org.

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About Hunter Douglas
Hunter Douglas Inc., headquartered in Pearl River, N.Y., is the leading manufacturer and marketer of custom window coverings in North America and a major manufacturer of architectural products, with approximately 7,000 employees and 40 divisions. The Company is also a national sponsor of Habitat for Humanity, covering windows in many Habitat homes built in the U.S. and Canada. For more information, visit http://www.hunterdouglas.com.

About Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Southern California
For more than 35 years, Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Southern California (RMHCSC) has been dedicated to improving the health and well-being of children and families across Inyo, Kern, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. RMHCSC helps families with critically-ill children stay together, connecting them with others facing similar challenges through its six Ronald McDonald Houses® in Bakersfield, Loma Linda, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Orange County and Pasadena and two Ronald McDonald Family Rooms®. One of the few chapters to operate a cost-free, medically supervised Camp Ronald McDonald For Good Times®, RMHCSC helps children with cancer and their siblings rediscover childhood and develop the self-esteem and self-efficacy often lost as a result of the disease. The organization also provides funding through its Community Grants Board to deserving non-profits that improve the lives of children and funds four college scholarship programs that help exemplary high school students pursue the education of their dreams. More information about RMHCSC and its programs can be found at http://www.rmhcsc.org or on http://www.Facebook.com/RMHCSoCal and @RMHC_SoCal.

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