Disney Cast Members living in Central Florida have come together to support the annual Heart of Florida United Way (HFUW) campaign. Raising $3.6 million in pledges and company donations, Cast shared from the heart to support and benefit local communities.
HFUW serves thousands of Central Florida children and their families in need of improved education, health, income and other basic needs. Through this annual campaign, Walt Disney World Cast Members collectively helped 60 programs and 39 agencies support this goal.
“We are grateful for the businesses, organizations and individuals who show their commitment and generosity to United Way’s programs and services year after year, said Harold Mills, 2015-16 Heart of Florida United Way campaign chair. “The funds raised over the past eight months will be invested in critical programs aimed at education, income, health and basic needs – programs that will help improve the lives of residents in our own community.”
This year’s HFUW campaign concluded with a celebration, where community leaders learned that overall pledges totaled more than $18.6 million. In addition, Walt Disney World Resort was recognized with the group’s Million Dollar Community Champion award.
“Cast Members, Crew Members and Imagineers are among the most generous people I know,” said Maribeth Bisienere, senior vice president of Disney Springs and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. “Through our collective efforts, we continue to make a difference and help provide a brighter tomorrow for those in need.” Bisienere has led the Walt Disney World United Way campaign as its executive champion for the last two years.
HFUW is the largest supporter of Central Florida health and human service agencies, which serve residents of Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties. Annually, more than 400,000 children and families are positively impacted by HFUW programs.
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, the 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.