March 29, 2017

Wise Giving Wednesday: Charitable Weddings

With the start of spring and warmer weather also comes thoughts of weddings and other planned happy events.  As reported in the Sydney Morning Herald on March 17, 2017, however, one 24-year old young lady faced a broken engagement and a canceled April 8th wedding reception that already had a no-return deposit. Instead of facing a depressing circumstance, she made a rather generous lemonade by converting the canceled wedding reception into a five-course charity ball to benefit an organization that helps people out of poverty. As she was quoted in the Herald, “There are women in different socioeconomic situations overseas that often don’t have the same freedom to say ‘no’ to marrying Mr. Wrong….”  When they found out about what happened, florists and other hired services offered reduced fees. The new charity fundraiser takes place in a few weeks and is generating attention and contributions. 

This story is certainly inspiring and demonstrates how personal heartbreak can be turned into a wonderful opportunity to help others. This wedding-charity connection is also showing up in other circumstances. The New York Times ran a story a few days ago, “For Those Who Have It All, Charitable Wedding Registries,” that noted that some wedding couples are offering invited guests the option of making donations to a specified charity instead of bringing wedding gifts. Of course, choosing a charity that everyone will want to support may be a significant factor in how much money may be raised in this manner. 

Some believe that giving to charity is often an emotionally-motivated decision. If so, a wedding celebration appears to provide a welcome connection of expressing good thoughts about others. Even in such circumstances, we encourage couples, before they say “I do,” to make sure to check out the trustworthiness of the selected benefiting charity by visiting Give.org to verify if they meet the 20 BBB Standards for Charity Accountability


As part of our Building Trust Video series, we are pleased to provide a video of Ranjani Saigal, Executive Director of the Ekal Vidalaya Foundation of USA (a BBB Accredited Charity) which runs single-teacher multi-grade schools in 53,000 remote rural villages in India. The schools teach literacy, numeracy, provide health awareness, civic awareness, and financial literacy. 


We are always working with charities to publish or update reports for donors. Visit Give.org or local BBBs to check out any charity before giving. Our recently evaluated charities include: 

Finally, remember to let us know by going to https://www.give.org/ask-us-about-a-charity1/ if you are interested in seeing a report on a charity not on the list and we will do our best to produce one.   

H. Art Taylor, President & CEO
BBB Wise Giving Alliance