Walt Disney World Resort Cast Members show their school spirit by collecting nearly $200,000 worth of school supplies for Central Florida students

Filed in: About WDW, Beyond the Theme Parks, Making a Difference

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., Aug. 15 2019 — Summer isn’t over yet, but the upcoming school year is top of mind for Walt Disney World Resort Cast Members and Disney VoluntEARS who recently came together to equip students and teachers in the Central Florida community with the school supplies they need for academic success.


Over the span of three weeks, Cast Members from across Walt Disney World Resort teamed up to collect nearly $200,000 worth of needed school supplies in support of local nonprofit A Gift For Teaching. From notebooks and folders to crayons and glue sticks, the nonprofit organization received thousands of items in advance of the busy back-to-school season, which will go on to benefit thousands of children in public schools in Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Polk and Lake counties.


“Seeing our Cast Members unite to prepare local students for the school year ahead is the embodiment of teamwork,” said Tajiana Ancora-Brown, director of external affairs at Walt Disney World Resort. “Our Cast Members are not only VoluntEARS, they’re parents, students and members of these very same school communities they come together to support.”


In addition to providing needed school supplies, Cast Members also donated money online and volunteered at A Gift For Teaching to sort through the collected school supplies. For every $1 donated, A Gift For Teaching will be able to distribute $10 worth of school supplies in the Central Florida community.


“The back-to-school season is when we experience the highest demand for school supplies in the area, and Disney Cast Members truly step up to the challenge each and every year,” said Jane Thompson, president at A Gift For Teaching. “Thanks to the magic they bring to our organization and our mission, we’re able to help local students and teachers achieve their dreams.”


Walt Disney World Resort hosts a back-to-school supply drive with its Cast Members each year in support of A Gift For Teaching, which is just one of the many ways Disney supports Central Florida youth education. Earlier this year, more than 40,000 books from Disney Worldwide Publishing were donated to Central Florida children and families through a unique collaboration with First Book at A Gift For Teaching.


Walt Disney World Resort also provides annual cash and in-kind donations to school districts and other nonprofit organizations supporting education, recognizes the achievements of outstanding students through the Disney Dreamers and Doers program, supports annual awards to teachers, principals and administrative support staff, and encourages volunteerism in schools across the region.