Just over three years ago I had this crazy idea to start a blog about Disney World….because I love to write and love Disney World more. At that time, who would have ever thought that my little blog would introduce me to thousands of “Disney Friends”, and ultimately open the door to being able to follow my dream of becoming a Disney travel agent! Some days I have to pinch myself when I think about working at something that I truly love, and having the honor and privilege of being able to assist hundreds of folks in creating magical Disney vacations….
So this is a very special time of the year for me, as I have the opportunity to celebrate this birthday, just when the Holiday Season gets underway. It seems appropriate somehow to celebrate something that gives joy to others, during this Season of Joy.
With that in mind, I am marking this birthday in two very special ways….and I hope that you will share in the celebration with me.
First, I will of course, have a fun giveaway for you all next week. Be sure to check out Monday’s blog post for details on what you can win…and what you need to do to be eligible!
Secondly, it was extremely important for me this year to somehow “pay it forward”. I feel very blessed, and so during this season of Thanks and of Giving, I would like to be able to offer my thanks, by giving. And that’s where you can help.
Starting tomorrow, December 1, through December 31, for any Disney vacations that I book, or are transferred to me, I will be donating 1-2% of the total vacation cost to one of 8 charities, on the client’s behalf. It is my hope that in creating Disney joy, I along with the vacationer, will also be a small part of helping others in need.
So here are the details:
- Travelers may choose one of the following 8 charities for their donation. These charities were specifically chosen by me and our writers at The Affordable Mouse, as organizations that are near and dear to our hearts. You can read more about each one below.
- Donations to each charity will be made within 30 days after the vacation is complete.
- Donations will be made on behalf of the client, in their name, and may be made in honor or in memory of anyone the client chooses.
- Donation percentage will be based upon the final total of the vacation package. Vacation packages of $2000 and more will be eligible for a 2% donation. Packages of less than $2000 will be eligible for a 1% donation.
- Donations will be made for any of the following Disney vacations that are booked or transferred to me between 12/1 and 12/31/12: Walt Disney World, Disneyland Resort, Disney Cruise Line, Adventures by Disney, Disney Aulani.
- Packages must be booked with a deposit prior to 12/31. Reservations booked directly with Disney may be transferred to my agency at no charge: transferred must be completed prior to 12/31.
I truly hope that you will be able to join with me in supporting one of the following very worthwhile charities. If you are not able to book or transfer a Disney vacation this December, please consider sharing this fundraiser with your friends or family who may be interested.
- Alzheimer’s Association: In memory of my wonderful mother who lived with this terrible disease for nearly a decade before passing in 2009. The Alzheimer’s Association is the leading, global voluntary health organization in Alzheimer’s care and support, and the largest private, nonprofit funder of Alzheimer’s research. The Alzheimer’s Association works on a global, national and local level to enhance care and support for all those affected by Alzheimer’s and related dementias. As the largest, private non-profit funder of Alzheimer’s research, the Association is committed to accelerating progress of new treatments, preventions and ultimately, a cure. The Association is the leading voice for Alzheimer’s disease advocacy, fighting for critical Alzheimer’s research, prevention and care initiatives at the state and federal level. http://www.alz.org
- Leukemia and Lymphoma Society: In memory of my dear father who was diagnosed with leukemia on December 26, 2003, and passed away on January 16, 2004. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services. http://www.lls.org/
- Give Kids The World: Located in Kissimmee, GKTW is a non-profit organization that exists only to fulfill the wishes of all children with life-threatening illnesses and their families from around the world to experience a memorable, joyful, cost-free visit to the Central Florida attractions, and to enjoy the magic of Give Kids The World Village for as long as there is a need. My daughter donated all of her birthday gifts there last year, and I know several families that have been helped by this wonderful organization. http://www.gktw.org/
- The Make A Wish Foundation: This is a great charity to support and donate to. It is very close to all of those involved with the Walt Disney Company. The Make A Wish Foundation grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions that may make if difficult for the family alone to grant the wish for the child. Disney is one of the frequent sites for these children to have their wishes granted. This foundation needs our help to grant as many of these children their one wish as we can. They are so deserving of this wish: just bringing this extra bit of magic into their lives brings the biggest and brightest smiles to their faces. Visit their website for stories of Wishes Granted at www.wish.org
- The March of Dimes: Today this is one of the largest and most successful non-profit organizations in the United States. It relies on contributions, through events such as the March for Babies. In fundraisers like these, participants walk fixed amounts for pledges of money and contributions from others to the foundation. The March of Dimes uses their status as a health charity organization to promote awareness and education among mothers and families. It teaches about prenatal and child care and attempts to educate mothers and doctors to prevent birth defects. It runs community services and seminars and spreads knowledge about the possibilities of infant mortality. The March of Dimes foundation also funds research worldwide, giving tens of millions of dollars to scientists in fields researching birth defects, prenatal health, and genetics. http://www.marchofdimes.com/
Melissa Sue supports:
- Heifer International: “Give a man a fish: you have fed him for today. Teach a man to fish; you have fed him for a lifetime.” Heifer International works to end poverty and hunger sustainably. They give gifts of regionally-appropriate livestock, seeds and trees (as well as extensive training) to needy families in more than 125 countries, creating a reliable source of both food and income. By giving families and communities a hand-up, not just a handout, Heifer International empowers them to turn hunger and poverty into hope and prosperity. Visit http://www.heifer.org for more information.
- Special Olympics: The mission of Special Olympics is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. This provides the athletes with continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community. Special Olympics is very special to me since I coached while in high school in Illinois, and a cousin of mine is still an athlete there. My brother in law is a Special Olympic athlete in Indiana. The athletes and coaches get so much joy out of participating in these sports that you can’t help but cheer them on! http://www.specialolympics.org/
- Susan B Komen: The number 1 charity supporting breast cancer awareness, Komen advocates for breast cancer self-awareness which is the number one method for fighting breast cancer. This foundation supports universal screenings and breast self-examinations, and early detection is the catalyst for their movement. This particular foundation tugged at my heart because a very dear Disney friend was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. She has been undergoing her treatment over the past few months and is truly an inspiration to me and all of the women that she comes in contact with. http://ww5.komen.org/
Thanking all of you for the support and friendship that you have shown over the past three wonderful years, and wishing you much joy in this holiday season! ~ Nancy