From the Disney Parks Blog and written by: Jennifer Fickley-Baker
Disney is committed to providing comfort, happiness, and inspiration to kids and families around the globe. This especially rings true during the holidays when Disney VoluntEARS participate in activities to help bring holiday joy to those in need.
VoluntEARS across Disney Parks, Experiences and Products have been busy during this special time of year adopting families, visiting hospitals, donating toys, and much more.
Here’s a look at how cast members made a difference this holiday season.
The Disneyland Resort VoluntEARS brought a touch of Disney magic to Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) at the annual holiday party. A giant gingerbread carousel, a yule log cake as long as a table, characters, balloons and sketch artists helped make the day bright and cheerful for patients and families.
Walt Disney World Resort VoluntEARS spread holiday joy by donating nearly 30,000 gifts for children in Central Florida as part of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots drive. Throughout the month, VoluntEARS also dedicated nearly 4,000 hours of service sorting and distributing thousands of donated toys.
Disneyland Paris hosted “Mission Noël,” and collected toys for children that are hospitalized during the holiday season. More than 1,200 toys were generously donated by more than 100 Cast Members and Disney VoluntEARS.
Shanghai Disney Resort VoluntEARS and beloved Santa visited Shanghai Children’s Medical Center to bring Disney magic and warmth to the young patients on December 12. More than 200 children were surprised with gifts. Throughout holiday season, VoluntEARS continued to visit children’s hospitals and accompanied young patients through holiday-themed crafts, authentic Disney stories, and other interactive activities.
VoluntEARS at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort prepared hundreds of Christmas gifts for delivery to hospitals and schools this holiday season. They also took the time to write handwritten messages in Christmas cards for kids with challenging health conditions, wishing them a Merry ‘Wishmas.’
Tokyo Disney Resort VoluntEARS celebrated the holidays in a sweet way by raising money for a cause with their Holiday Charity Bake Sale. All of the proceeds from the sale were donated to Aiji no Ie (House of the Precious Children), a local orphanage in Tokyo.
At Consumer Products Commercialization and Products, Publishing and Games, and Walt Disney Imagineering, teams of VoluntEARS adopted families facing poverty, insecurity, and homelessness this holiday season. Through the Adopt-A-Family program, families served by local non-profits Ascencia, Para Los Ninos, and Family Promise of the Verdugos provided Disney VoluntEARS with their holiday wish lists. Using each family’s list as their guide, VoluntEARS shopped for gifts, held wrapping parties, and delivered gifts. This year, Glendale and Burbank Disney VoluntEARS adopted 254 families, 70 of which were supported by local DPEP teams. Additionally, VoluntEARS packaged 2,000 Clean the World hygiene kits and bagged more than 32,272 lbs. of food for the L.A. Regional Food Bank.
For more than 36 years, Disney VoluntEARS have been making a positive impact in communities around the world.
Last year, VoluntEARS provided more than 600,100 hours of service and the Company donated more than $332 million in cash, in-kind support, and product donations to various charities around the world.