Racing to improve kids’ health


RBC makes a lasting impact with Race for the Kids

Every year, at the starting line of the RBC Race for the Kids at Comer Children’s Hospital, hundreds of runners and walkers line up, ready to race to the finish line on the University of Chicago’s campus in Hyde Park. Families and friends cheer from the sidelines of the 5K course, the Kids’ Mile, and the Kids’ Dash.

The RBC Race for the Kids at Comer Children’s is an annual event that supports life-saving pediatric research and patient care programs at the University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital. In 2023, the race generated over $432,000 for Comer Children’s.

The race was started in 2003 by Jean and Daniel Mohan, a grateful patient family, and is hosted annually by the Comer Development Board. In 2013, the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), one of North America’s leading financial services companies, became the race’s title sponsor. Since then, the race has become the largest community fundraiser for Comer Children’s, raising over $3.8 million and attracting more than 18,000 participants.

Since RBC became the title sponsor, overall fundraising has increased significantly, with race proceeds supporting more than 30 pediatric research and patient care projects. In 2023, research projects supported by the race ranged from studies on the effects of sedatives and painkillers administered in pediatric critical care, to potential biomarkers of pediatric egg and peanut allergies, to the importance of the gut microbiome in infants. The 2023 RBC Race for the Kids also supported the expansion of school and education services at Comer Children’s.

“The race at Comer Children’s provides a great opportunity for RBC employees to get involved on the ground here in Chicago,” said Keith Solomon, managing director and deputy head of municipal and securitized products at RBC Capital Markets. “Giving back to the local community is an important value of the bank and its culture.”

The race is part of RBC’s Race for the Kids Series, which includes over twenty-five events around the world—from New York to Singapore to Hong Kong to Montreal to London. All of RBC’s races support youth charities.

“We not only want to provide philanthropic support to Comer Children’s but also to build camaraderie among our employees and engage our clients in a high-spirited event,” said Lauren Stanley Johnsen, global lead, digital channel strategy and US head, brand content at RBC Capital Markets.

“Children need access to healthcare in order to reach their full potential,” Stanley Johnsen said. “Comer Children’s does this important work in the Chicago community, while also advancing pediatric research that has a global impact.”

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