Disney Friends for Change Grant


Local Contact: Kristen McMullen

Director of Communications & Alumni Relations

Pinewood Preparatory School

1114 Orangeburg Road

Summerville, SC 29483

Office: (843) 376-0142 ext 2002



Youth Service America Contact

Brandon Gryde

202-296-2992 x 128




Grant supports environmental initiatives that culminate on Global Youth Service Day 

SUMMERVILLE, SOUTH CAROLINA – Katie Stagliano, a Pinewood Prep 5th grade student, was one of 75 successful applicants around the world to receive a $500 Disney’s Friends for Change grant supporting youth-led environmental initiatives for Global Youth Service Day (GYSD), the largest service event in the world, April 23-25. Disney’s Friends for Change: Project Green (www.disney.com/projectgreen) is a program that encourages young people to take steps together with their friends to help the planet. The grants, administered by Youth Service America (YSA), offer youth the resources they need to bring environmental initiatives to life for their local communities.      

Each Disney’s Friends for Change grant recipient participating in GYSD will join the thousands of projects and millions of youth who work to make their communities a better place. The funded service projects will address a broad range of environmental issues including clean water, creating community gardens, and raising awareness about renewable energy. 

 In Katie’s project, Growing for the Greater Good, Katie along with her Pinewood Prep classmates will plant 14 rows of vegetable seedlings in a large scale vegetable garden located on the school grounds.  Everything that is harvested from this vegetable garden will be donated to local soup kitchens to help feed families in need in our community. This garden was started and is run by the young Pinewood student. The garden will be planted on Friday, April 23, 2010.  Local elected officials will be invited to Pinewood Prep to help support Katie and her classmates on Global Youth Service Day.

 “Over 12 million people in the United States alone go to bed hungry. Many of them are right here in South Carolina. I am very excited that Disney and Youth Service America selected me to receive this grant that will help me provide fresh vegetables to people in need in my community. The generous donation of vegetable seedlings for the garden from Bonnie Plants will help make a huge impact in my fight against hunger too. It is the best feeling to be able to help families who are struggling have a healthy meal,” said 11 year-old Katie Stagliano.

“Youth around the world care a great deal about the environment,” said Steve Culbertson, YSA president and CEO. “Disney’s Friends for Change grants are providing thousands of young people an opportunity to address those environmental issues that are the most pressing in their communities. And participating in Global Youth Service helps raise awareness of how children and youth are working towards creating a healthier planet.” 

For more information about the Disney Friends for Change Grants, visit Disney.com/projectgreen. To learn more about Global Youth Service Day, visit www.GYSD.org. 



Disney’s Friends for Change: Project Green is a multiplatform initiative that helps kids help the planet. Through the program, kids can learn practical ways to help the environment, get their friends involved, track their collective impact and have the opportunity to help Disney decide how $1 million in donations to various environmental causes will be made over the course of a year. Kids can join online at www.Disney.com/projectgreen, where they’ll commit to taking simple everyday actions, such as turning off the lights and switching to reusable water bottles, and find out more about why these actions matter. To date, kids have taken 1.5 million pledges that stand to prevent more than 70,000 tons of carbon emissions per year, save nearly 122 million gallons of water per month and prevent close to 200,000 pounds of trash from entering landfills every month. 

Youth Service America (YSA) improves communities by increasing the number and the diversity of young people, ages 5-25, serving in substantive roles. Founded in 1986, YSA supports a global culture of engaged youth committed to a lifetime of service, learning, leadership, and achievement. The impact of YSA’s work through service and service-learning is measured in student achievement, workplace readiness, and healthy communities. For more information, visit www.YSA.org. 

Global Youth Service Day is an annual campaign that celebrates and mobilizes the millions of children and youth who improve their communities each day of the year through service and service-learning. For more information, visit www.GYSD.org.  

CONTACT: Lily Bedrossian


      The Walt Disney Company


      Brandon Gryde         Youth Service America

            202-296-2992 x 128