Industry Update
Press Release 8 November 2012

ASFONA Members Aid in Multi-Million Dollar Resort Renovation of Give Kids The World Village

ASFONA Owner and Associate Board Member companies show support for non-profit organization fulfilling the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses

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ASFONA (Association of Starwood Franchisees & Owners – North America) announced at its 2012 board meeting earlier this year that the organization had adopted Give Kids The World (GKTW) as an official association-endorsed non-profit charity, promising support from its members, which include many top providers of leading hospitality industry products and services. Since that time, many ASFONA board member companies have teamed up to make significant contributions to the Central Florida "storybook" resort that is dedicated to fulfilling the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses.


Give Kids The World Village opened in 1989 and has grown to include 140 villa-style accommodations, multiple entertainment attractions, whimsical venues, and a variety of fun activities, specifically designed for children with special needs. The ASFONA member contributions are part ofthe kickoff to a $100 million campaign to renovate and refurbish all existing villas and expand the facility's capacity, in order to accommodate even more families each year.

"Give Kids The World provides dream vacations for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families at no cost," says Pamela Landwirth, president of Give Kids The World. "Without generous contributions like those of the ASFONA board members, we could not continue the work that we've been called to do."

Beginning this ambitious project,Forrest Perkins provided design services, with procurement provided by HPG International,under the leadership of Phil Miller, vice president of design & construction for Davidson Hotels & Resorts, who coordinated the collection of all items needed to outfit the redesigned model villa. Several other ASFONA members have stepped up to contribute FF&E products, including Simmons Bedding Company, who donated all mattresses for the villa, and Standard/SK Textiles, who provided a variety of fabrics needed for the villa's furnishings, including sofas and barstools.

During this massive renovation project, no design elementwas over looked. The bathrooms received a fresh design with new Kohler plumbing fixtures throughout, as well as new tubs for the children's' room. Hunter Amenities designed and contributed a specially designed "ice cream-inspired" collection of shampoos, lotions and soaps. Helping to further enhance the Give Kids The World experience, Fabric Innovations made a donation of special "wish pillows" as a take-home gift for the Village's star-guests. This gift will be provided for the revolving needs of the Village for the next three years.

Covering technology needs for the renovations, several ASFONA members made donations of their products for both individual villas and resort operations as a whole. P&F USA/Philips Hospitality TV provided each villa with two flat-screen televisions, and American Hotel Register worked together with GE to donate all appliances found throughout the guest accommodations. Working to keep Give Kids The World special visitors safe and secure, ASSA ABLOY Hospitality (VingCard Elsafe) installed RFID electronic door locks, as well as their VISIONLINE software.

To contribute to the busy food service operation at the Village, US Foodservice has made donations of consumables, and PepsiCo Foodservice is providing soft drinks, along with Nestle Waters. In addition, Rubbermaid is helping to take care of housekeeping needs, with donations of cleaning supplies.

In order to spread the word about the work that Give Kids The World is doing and help them raise funds to keep the operation running, LodgeNet Interactive is broadcasting a public service announcement (PSA) in over 1.2 million hotel rooms in the United States. Monetary donations have also been a part of ASFONA's contribution to the Village. During a recent tour of Give Kids The World, John Shingler, ASFONA's president, presented a check for $10,000 from an ASFONA board member/owner who wished to remain anonymous, which now brings ASFONA board member cash pledge/contributions to over $150,000. Additional donations of products and funds are intended, as needed to complete this important project.

"Our work as an association is about more than representing Starwood's franchisees and owners. It is also about making an impact on the communities in which we do business," said Shingler. "This year, our owners, associates and honorary board members did a terrific job of donating funds, products and services to a wonderful cause. In addition, many others such as PSAV and Fabric Innovations, rolled up their sleeves and offered their time, working hands-on at the property. Give Kids The World is making a huge impact on the lives of these children and their families, and it is our honor to be of service to them."

Give Kids The World has been recognized as the highest rated charity in America by personal finance website Mainstreet, and also as reported by MSN Money. All ASFONA efforts and donations go directly to the needs of the children and their families visiting the resort.

For more information on ASFONA, please visit

About Give Kids The World
Recognized as the highest rated charity in America by personal finance site MainStreet, and also reported by MSN Money, Give Kids The World Village (GKTW) is a 70-acre, nonprofit resort in Central Florida that creates magical memories for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families. GKTW provides accommodations at its whimsical resort, donated attractions tickets, meals and more for a weeklong, cost-free fantasy vacation. With the help of many generous individuals, corporations and partnering wish-granting organizations, Give Kids The World has welcomed more than 118,000 families from all 50 states and more than 70 countries. For more information about GKTW and its mission, visit

About ASFONA - Association of Starwood Franchisees & Owners – North America

The mandate of ASFONA is to provide an effective line of communication between Starwood and its franchisees, owners and hotel management companies doing business in North America. The association provides Starwood the opportunity to seek the council and opinion of the franchise and ownership community on policy and standard operating procedures that can influence the owners' businesses and the cost of doing business.

ASFONA's Board of Directors is charged with providing the leadership required to build strong working relationships between Starwood and its franchisees and owners. The primary goal of ASFONA is to ensure that all ownership groups, and specifically those in membership, have a solid platform upon which both ASFONA and Starwood Hotels & Resorts' management can work together in building the best and most successful brands in the hotel industry. For more information, please visit

John Shingler
ASFONA President
Phone: 713-523-1352
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