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Area 3 Foundation exists to enhance the life of current and former character Performers, Attendants and Captains by providing financial support for continuing education and by providing assistance to those in crisis.


Our Vision is to help character Performers, Attendants ad Captains prepare for their next role in life.



A letter from Paul Hildenbrand, President

I have been a Disney boy my whole life. I was born and raised in Disney’s backyard, hearing the fireworks every night and having Magic Kingdom as my adolescent playground are very important parts of my childhood memories. 

I have always been a bit dramatic, entertaining and a theater geek, so it was fitting that in 1989, I would join the cast of ELP! Department 384, the infamous Zoo Crew! What I didn’t expect was to be accepted into a network of people that I can still claim as my family to this day.

In 1994, I became a Flight Attendant with American Airlines. During my initial interview, Disney was the first thing the interviewer noticed, she said “Oh! You worked for Disney!”. I said “No, I PLAYED at Disney!” With this answer, she enthusiastically propelled me to join American Airlines; 28 years later and I’m still flying the skies!

My involvement in Area 3 is my love letter to my forever entertainment family. Having the ability to help my fellow cast members through continued education for them and their families; and to provide comfort through crisis situations fuels my soul. I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be… a part of this amazing foundation.

We Are Family. 

A letter from Helen (Hess) Stark, Co-Founder and Vice President


I went to college in California and depended a lot on my Disney family to survive. Kellie Lawton, Scott Burkhart and Steve Birket gave me a place to stay when I was literally homeless and I am forever grateful. Other people from WDW also gave me critical support during that time and I could not have made it through college without them.

Facebook has reunited Dept 384 again and I have seen people struggling with going back to school or with an illness or crisis and I wanted to do something to help. I maintain close contact with a group of my Disney friends and it was through this handful of friends that Area 3 was born. Michelle, Jen, Carrie and Jeni offered ideas and support and Albert Divetta came up with the name and designed the logo. 

Alicia Boyle, Rafael Rivera and Jody Glassman immediately and enthusiastically agreed to be the founding boards member and have brought Area 3 Foundation into existence.

It is the love that I have for the family that was formed during my stint at WDW that drove the creation of Area 3.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​




Area 3 Foundation is a non-profit foundation whose focus is providing financial assistance for post-secondary education through a scholarship program to current and former Walt Disney character Performers, Attendants and Captains.

A3F is a solely donor supported organization. If you would like to donate, please visit our donation page. If you would like to apply for a scholarship, please visit our scholarship page.

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