With our growing Disney Cruise Line fleet, and Disney’s newest island destination at Lighthouse Point in Eleuthera opening next summer, The Bahamas continues to feel like home for our shipboard crew members.
While the Disney Wish was in port in Nassau, The Bahamas, Disney Wish crew members teamed up with community organizations to build a backyard garden for a local non-profit foster care organization, the Ranfurly Homes for Children. Now, the children living there can be inspired to grow and enjoy their own vegetables.
Disney Cruise Line collaborated with the Agricultural Development Organization (ADO) and other community partners to launch the new Community Farming project supporting youth gardening programs across The Bahamas.
Crew members, the ADO team and children living at the Ranfurly Homes for Children worked together to build a shade house, garden beds and plant a variety of vegetables, including peppers, cabbage, beets as well as basil and other spices.
Mary, an entertainment crew member aboard the Disney Wish, joined other Disney Cruise Line VoluntEARS to help spruce up the backyard while the ship was in port in Nassau. “It was amazing to be here and be able to give back to the kids who live at the Ranfurly Homes for Children. We got to work with some of the children and build something together which was special,” said Mary.
Philip Smith, Bahamas executive chairman, Agricultural Development Organization Bahamas said creating this garden for the children will teach them how to grow sustainable, healthy foods and manage their own garden. He added that collaborating with companies like Disney Cruise Line is important. “We are very happy and pleased to work with Disney on this initiative. It helps us make a bigger impact across The Bahamas.”
“Over the last 25 years, Disney Cruise Line has been committed to creating lasting, positive impact in The Bahamas,” said Leslie Lopez, human resources manager, Disney Cruise Line. “Our support of the Community Farming Project is one of the many ways we’re providing the tools and resources to empower and inspire young people in port communities we call home,” Lopez added.
Braniska Bullard is a former resident of the Ranfurly Homes for Children. Today, she works as an ambassador to support the children’s home she grew up in. She said experiences like these for the children who live at Ranfurly are invaluable. “It gives the kids a sense of pride to be able to contribute to something meaningful and grow their own vegetables,” she said. “Disney has been very impactful in our home and our kids’ lives, and it’s been nice to see them smiling while planting.”
Disney Cruise Line has supported the Ranfurly Homes for Children in a variety of ways. During the holidays, Disney Wish crew joined Captain Mickey Mouse at the foster care organization to bring holiday cheer, distribute gifts and spend time with the children. In addition, the kids recently had the opportunity to board the Disney Wish for a special ship tour and the chance to learn from the captain and other crew members about their roles onboard.
Disney Cruise Line has also committed a financial donation to help support the Community Farming Project’s development of backyard farms in schools in Abaco, near where Castaway Cay, a Disney destination, is located, and in Eleuthera, where DCL is creating a new island destination at Lighthouse Point, opening summer 2024.