Disney plans to invest more than $34 million in community support in 2018

Filed in: About WDW

Disney Grants go to infinity and beyond with $500,000 to fund impactful initiatives for local nonprofit organizations.

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. April 16, 2018— It’s time to celebrate! As part of its plan to invest more than $34 million in giving in the Central Florida community in 2018, Disney has out-of-this-world plans to surprise five nonprofit organizations this week to award $500,000 as they reach for the skies and dream of making a big impact in Central Florida.

Throughout the week, a traveling Toy Story-themed tailgate-style party will make its way around the community, stopping at five organizations in recognition of their efforts. Today, the “party-on-wheels” made its first stop at Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida. The organization applied for a 2018 Disney Grant to help expand its current School Market and Teen Nutrition program.

“This unique program reaches a very vulnerable population,” said Dave Krepcho, President and CEO of Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida. “Teenagers often hesitate to ask for help, and this program brings nutritious, complimentary and easy-to-access food straight into their schools, encouraging them to eat healthily and get the assistance they need in an environment where they’re already comfortable.”

This Disney Grant will fund an extension of the program into both Osceola and Celebration High Schools, joining six other local participating schools and further advancing Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida’s mission of alleviating local hunger. The grant will also fund the launch of the Teen Nutrition Team, an application-based one-year internship opportunity for students at participating schools, where they will engage in peer-to-peer nutrition education.

To celebrate the tremendous impact this unique program aims to bring the Central Florida community, more than 50 staff members from the food bank enjoyed Toy Story-themed food, beverages, games and entertainment… and a special visit from one of the most dynamic duos in town: Woody and Buzz Lightyear.

Walt Disney World Resort and its Cast Members have supported Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida for more than 25 years, sharing in their mission of fighting hunger and feeding hope into the local community. The 2018 Disney Grants are part of more than $34 million in giving that Disney plans to invest in the Central Florida community this year. Through the support of Disney’s investment, these unique, collaborative efforts will continue positively impacting the lives of Central Florida children and families through their promise of significant, long-lasting and solutions-driven change.

The Toy Story-themed celebrations will continue throughout the week as four more organizations learn they are a 2018 Disney Grant recipient.


About community engagement at Walt Disney World Resort:

For decades, Walt Disney World Resort has remained committed to Central Florida, investing in our community in ways that directly improve the lives of children and families. We do this to infuse the same unique magic seen of our theme parks and resorts into the day-to-day lives of Central Floridians who need it the most, helping to strengthen children and families and bring positive, lasting change to the community. In 2018, Disney plans to invest more than $34 million in giving to local organizations, and more than 200,000 volunteer hours through the efforts of Disney VoluntEARS.

About Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida:

Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida is a nonprofit organization that collects, stores and distributes donated food to more than 550 feeding partners in six Central Florida counties: Brevard, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia. Last year, the food bank distributed 52 million meals to partner programs such as food pantries, soup kitchens, women’s shelters, senior centers, day care centers and Kids Cafes.