Meet the Aguirres: Finalists for the Disney and Points of Light Volunteer Family of the Year

Thomas Smith

by , Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

The Aguirre family from McAllen, Texas is the second of five finalists in the running to be named the Disney and Points of Light Volunteer Family of the Year!

The Aguirre family’s journey to volunteering began almost five years ago when daughter, Emily noticed a homeless person for the first time outside their local grocery store. Emily had lots of questions about the man and, after her father, Rick explained that he did not have a home and lived on the streets, asked if they could give him some food, as he looked hungry.

That week, the Aguirres decided that instead of giving up something for Lent, as they normally did, they would instead feed a homeless person every day for the next 40 days… and they have not stopped yet! Today, the Emily’s Meals team feeds 40 people every day, rain or shine. They also link their homeless friends to numerous local health, social service agencies, and even coordinate pet care.

The Aguirres were one of thousands of families across the country nominated for the Disney and Points of Light Volunteer Family of the Year contest by schools and nonprofits registered with the Disney Family Volunteering Reward Program.

Now five amazing finalist families will be featured on ABC-TV’s “Good Morning America,” each day this week sharing the stories of their incredible volunteer work, followed by a nationwide online vote starting on Oct. 11 where you will be able to vote for the family that most inspires you.

 The Aguirres join the Orlando family, who were announced yesterday as one of the five finalists now in the running to win.

 The winning family will be announced on GMA on Nov. 1 and will receive a dream vacation to Walt Disney World where they will be the guests of honor at a special event to celebrate Family Volunteer Day on Nov. 23. The nonprofit or school who nominated the family will also receive $10,000 to continue their important work in the community.

Make sure to tune into GMA every day this week to meet the rest of the incredible Top 5 families and keep visiting Disney Parks Blog for more updates on the competition and details on how you can vote! You can also join the conversation by sharing the families’ stories using #VolunteerTogether.

If you and your family would like to get involved with family volunteering, you can visit Points of Light to find opportunities in your area or search DIY projects that cover a variety of issue areas. Nonprofits and schools in the U.S. can join the Disney Family Volunteering Reward Program and earn Disney Parks tickets by hosting volunteer family events.



  • Thank you for sharing such an heartwarming story, Disney Parks Blog! I hope others are inspired to help those in need in their own communities! Great job, Aguirre family & Emily’s Meals! 💕

  • Wow! So impressive and humbling.

    How do you choose between incredible and awesome?

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