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Disney Gives Central Florida Students Back-to-School Essentials

Kathleen Prihoda

by , Manager, Communications & Public Affairs

As kids enjoy their last days of summer break, Walt Disney World Cast Members have been gearing up to help Central Florida students succeed in the upcoming school year.

Disney VoluntEARS

Stocking up on boxes of crayons, rulers, pencils and notebooks over the last few weeks, Cast Members have collected a record 2 million school supplies through Walt Disney World Resort’s annual back-to-school supply drive. See a video here.

This week, hundreds of Disney VoluntEARS are sorting through school supplies and distributing them to local students through partnerships with A Gift For Teaching and Supplies to Assist Our Students, also known as S.T.A.R.S. Both organizations say they are seeing a record level of need in our local community with more families struggling to make ends meet.

Chesta Hembrooke, president and founder of S.T.A.R.S., believes that new school supplies give children confidence on the first day of school so they can be on equal footing with everyone in their class. According to Hembrooke, the donated backpacks and supplies from Disney are the only new items that thousands of local students will receive to start the school year.


  • The cast members at WDW are definitely THE BEST!! God bless all of those who donated supplies & time to such a worthy cause! So many families out there are struggling, but it so wonderful to know that they will receive a touch of the Disney magic through this school supply donation drive!!! Way to spread that Disney magic 🙂

  • I knew that the cast members from WDW were the best…this just confirms it! 🙂 You guys do an awesome job! You are truly the reason that my family loves visiting WDW…you make every trip magical. Thank you!

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