Late last week, Disney Cruise Line shared more details of their Wishes Set Sail initiative that was first announced onboard the Disney Wish during a plaque exchange ceremony during her maiden call to Nassau. In celebration of the Disney Wish’s inaugural season, Disney Cruise Line (DCL) announced that the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida (BGCCF) is one of the first youth initiatives to receive funding as part of its all-new ‘Wishes Set Sail’ campaign.
Earmarked for BGCCF Brevard County Branches, DCL’s donation will support education and career development programs, with a special emphasis on the maritime and hospitality industries.
“Disney Cruise Line is excited to continue supporting our valued port communities and contributing to critical youth initiatives through this new program,” said Disney Cruise Line Senior Vice President & General Manager Sharon Siskie. “We’re proud of the 25-year relationship we have with Canaveral Port Authority and Brevard County and are dedicated to continuing our commitment to this area. Our hope is that this donation will empower local students and help their wishes set sail.”
Captain Minnie Mouse and Disney Ambassador Ali Manion visited the Cocoa Branch of the BGCCF to celebrate the launch of this campaign. Making her debut in 2019, Captain Minnie empowers girls and young women to pursue careers in the cruise industry and chart a course for success.
The Walt Disney Company has enjoyed a long-time partnership with the BGCCF, which aims to provide a safe place to learn and grow for more than 7,000 at-risk children throughout the region while enabling them to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens.
“We are truly thankful for our continued partnership with Disney Cruise Line, particularly as we look to create new initiatives that will spark our members’ interest in our programs,” said RaQuel Hinton, Senior Service Director for the organization’s Cocoa Branch. “The Wishes Set Sail support will open new doors for our members to explore careers in the maritime and hospitality industries, which many of them have yet to experience.”
In total, Disney Cruise Line will distribute $400,000 to local youth initiatives in DCL’s key port communities throughout the Disney Wish’s inaugural season. Wishes Set Sail adds to Disney Cruise Line’s initiatives that inspire youth to pursue maritime careers.
Other efforts include special programming in youth activity spaces onboard where young captain hopefuls, together with Captain Minnie, practice their STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills in fun, maritime-themed challenges and games that test their problem-solving and nautical abilities.
In 2019, Disney Cruise Line also introduced a scholarship program in partnership with the LJM Maritime Academy in Nassau for female cadets aspiring to become ship captains and shipboard leaders. The scholarships include tuition to the three-year program – two years of study at the academy and one year of service aboard a Disney ship.