Walt Disney World Resort
March 27, 2014
COMMUNITY UPDATE

Disney Grants Benefit 85,000 Kids

Walt Disney World Resort awarded $3.8 million in Disney Grants to local nonprofits and organizations to benefit more than 85,000 Central Florida children. As the signature giving program, Disney Grants encompasses the broad range of Walt Disney World contributions, including grants, sponsorships, event support and other donations. Disney also presented the annual Bob Allen Award to Page 15, an Orlando nonprofit that offers free after-school tutoring and creative writing workshops for students. "With this generous grant, Walt Disney World not only enhances our resources and capabilities, it encourages our young writers to keep following their dreams," said Julia Young, executive director of Page 15.  

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Nonprofits Engage Family Volunteers

Thanks to a recent training session led by Hands On Orlando and generationOn, Central Florida nonprofits may soon rely on even more children and families as their most enthusiastic volunteers. Walt Disney World Resort hosted representatives of 26 local nonprofits for Ready, Set, Go!, a workshop offering ideas, tips and resources to effectively engage youth volunteers and families. Walt Disney World Resort also donated seed money for the organizations to help them start new family-friendly service events. "This experience has revealed an exciting new way to expand our base of support, while giving local families the chance to enjoy volunteering together," said Jada Smith, chief executive officer for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Florida. 

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Green Thumbs Give Festival Flourish

 

For the past year, a team of 400 Disney Cast Members have been keeping their green thumbs busy preparing for the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. The 75-day festival is a delight to the senses, with fragrant flowers, artistically sculpted topiaries, tasty garden-fresh dishes and the groovy tunes of the Flower Power Concert Series. At the root of this festival is a team of gardeners, horticulturists and landscape architects who ensure each of the festival's 30 million blooms looks their best. "The team's talent is on full display this year in the 100 whimsical topiaries, colorful flower beds, as well as the hundreds of containers filled with greenery throughout Epcot," said Eric Darden, the festival's horticulture manager. 

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Disney Helps EDC Promote Orlando

Disney and other local companies recently joined the Orlando Economic Development Commission (EDC) in New York City to kick off a new, regional business branding campaign called, "Orlando. You don't know the half of it." The goal of the campaign is to raise awareness of the region's wide array of business assets, including thriving technology industries, diverse and expansive educational options, innovative start-ups and real estate developments as well as other lifestyle enhancements. "Having a strong business environment benefits the community and its individual residents, who are our current and future workforce," said Ken Potrock, the EDC board member leading the campaign and senior vice president and general manager of Disney Vacation Club and Adventures by Disney. 

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ALSO MAKING HEADLINES...
it's a small world, after all

 
To celebrate the 50th anniversary of  
it's a small world, Disney invites fans to join a virtual sing-along of the classic attraction's famous song.
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Cast Members Raise $250,000 for JA
 

 

5,000 Disney VoluntEARS raised $250,000 for Junior Achievement to teach local children financial literacy through the annual Bowl-A-Thon. 

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Disney Honored with Supplier Diversity Award



Disney World received the Corporate Leadership award from the Central and North Florida Minority Supplier Development Council for efforts to promote supplier diversity in Central Florida.

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Cast Members at Core of Marriage Proposal



Cast Members made magic for a recent marriage proposal at Downtown Disney where a blushing bride-to-be said "yes!"  
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