LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., — Walt Disney World Resort began surprising Central Florida organizations this month by awarding $5.6 million in Disney Grants to support their efforts to positively impact the lives of over 300,000 local children and their families.
This year, more than 120 organizations throughout Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Lake and Polk counties will be granted by Disney. The grants support Central Floridians through a variety of services such as afterschool programs for students, bonding activities for new parents and antibullying awareness skills.
“Whether coming to the aid of families in need, developing children’s love for the arts or helping them realize their dreams, these Disney Grant recipients have earned our support and admiration,” said George A. Kalogridis, president of Walt Disney World Resort. “For more than four decades, Disney has supported local organizations like these that share our commitment to children and families.”
Grant recipients were selected based on their alignment with Disney’s philanthropic focus of promoting community, creativity, conservation and healthy living. Today’s grant recipients include:
- Boys & Girls Club of Lake and Sumter Counties – to provide learning opportunities to young students during the summer.
- Boys Town Central Florida – to help families develop life skills aimed at resolving conflict.
- Children’s Home Society of Florida – to teach positive parenting techniques.
- Collegiate Pathways – to help middle and high school girls explore opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math.
- Community Food & Outreach Center – to assist families with basic needs, such as food and clothing, during an emergency.
- Enzian Theater – for middle and high school students to experience the art of filmmaking.
- Girls Inc. of Lakeland – to help girls perform well academically, particularly in reading and math.
- Mad Cow Theatre – to help fund a festival, enabling children to explore science, language and performance themes with their families.
- The Mustard Seed of Central Florida – to provide furniture for families.
- Orlando Monarchs, Inc. – to promote youth participation in baseball.
- Orlando Neighborhood Improvement Corporation – for an antibullying afterschool program.
- Polk Museum of Art – to support arts education during an afterschool program.
- Urban Think Foundation – to develop fun and creatively engaging literacy programs for Orlando youth.
The 2016 Disney Grants represent contributions to organizations that receive funds, sponsorships and other donations. The remaining 108 Disney Grants recipients will be awarded throughout the year and will be highlighted on social media at #GRANTedbyDisney.
As a company with 74,000 Cast Members who live and work in Central Florida, Walt Disney World Resort is committed to investing in our community. In 2015, Walt Disney World Resort donated a record $44 million in cash and in-kind support to local organizations, as well as more than 200,000 volunteer hours through the efforts of our Disney VoluntEARS.