Making An Impact With Your Wedding Gift Registry
Courtesy of the I Do Foundation
Raising charitable donations through your celebration is a great way to make an impact. In addition to your wedding gift registry and favor options, the I Do Foundation has many other tips to ensure your celebration reflects your values.
Rings and Things
Whatever your ring preferences, you may wish to consider the source of your chosen metals or gems. Jewelers are beginning to offer rings made from high quality, recycled metals. Consider “Earthwise” Jewelry from stores like Leber Jewelers. In addition, nonprofits such as Global Witness have developed consumer questions to ask that will help you feel good about your diamond purchases.
Looking for a great gown at a reasonable price? Consider shopping with bridal consignment programs that donate their proceeds to charity. In the New York region, the Bridal Garden offers designer gowns at a discount prices to benefit Sheltering Arms Children Service. Making Memories Breast Cancer Foundation sells donated gowns in bridal shows around the country and uses the proceeds to grant the wishes of breast cancer patients. You can find the gown of your dreams, while raising money for a good cause.
Location, Location, Location
Another great way to make your wedding dollars have an impact is to hold your event at a public space such as a nature preserve, botanical garden, museum, or historical society. Your rental fees can support the maintenance of the location and the educational programs they offer. Open your mind beyond the traditional hotel and reception hall options and you may find a much more creative setting for your event.
Food for Thought
Food and beverages are one of the biggest parts of a wedding budget, so this is a great area in which to make your dollars have an impact.
Find a Community Caterer
Many nonprofit organizations have begun high-quality catering and baking businesses. These programs train and employ low-income individuals, providing job opportunities as well as new resources to support community programs. Find a community catering program in your area.
Consider the Source
Give your guests a tasty and healthy meal by working with an organic caterer. If you aren’t able to find an organic caterer in your area, ask your caterer to consider using naturally raised meat or fish choices that are environmentally friendly. Check out the list of approved seafood from the Monterey Bay Aquarium to suggest to your caterer.
Plan ahead with your caterer to ensure that any left over food goes to good use. Cooked food can’t be donated to food banks – but it can be used by food rescue programs. Check out Second Harvest [www.secondharvest.org] to find a food rescue program near you.
Getting There and Away
Guests will be coming from near and far for your celebration, and as excited as you are to see everyone, all that travel has an impact on the environment. There are many programs that can help make your celebration carbon neutral by allowing you to offset carbon dioxide emissions through investments in industrial efficiency and renewable energy projects. To learn more, check out options like Terrapass and the Carbon Fund.