While it’s totally normal for your big day to be all about you, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be able to give back either. Whether it’s to local vendors, organizations, charities, or even Mother Earth, there are still so many ways you can be socially conscious in an event as big as your wedding. Not only will you feel like the luckiest person on earth marrying the love of your life, you’ll also be using this day to help others as well. So go on and check out our suggestions below!
One of the first things you can do before you start planning is to think about how everything you’ll be doing will affect the environment. Is there a way you can minimize harmful actions to the environment? Think about things like your venue, the invitations, your wedding registry, and even your favors. You can definitely go eco-friendly in all these aspects–just do your research and get suppliers who will be on board with your plans.
You’ll be surprised when you realize just how much waste a single wedding can produce. One thing you can keep in mind while planning is how you can reuse certain things for other purposes. For example, you can use succulents as table centerpieces, which can also double as your favors for your guests. You can minimize paper waste by sending out digital invitations, writing down table numbers and the menu on boards instead of paper. You can even request for straws to be taken out of the bar too!
Have a look around your house and check out what you can recycle, and try a little D.I.Y. You can use old beer or wine bottles as flower vases, and even use scratch paper to make paper flowers. You can also ask family and friends for old material they aren’t using (such as old clothes or linens) and consider recycling them as either bridesmaid dresses or table runners. There is no limit when it comes to recycling–all you have to do is be creative!
Besides supporting local vendors, try supporting those that support a good cause themselves. There are so many local and talented groups here in the Philippines that support many good causes. If you want weaves, pottery, fans, artwork, etc. source vendors who have the same MO as you. Whether it’s supporting indigenous tribes, school kids, single mothers, I’m sure you can find a cause you’ll want to give back to.
Instead of having a wedding registry, make a note to ask your guests to donate to your favorite charity instead. Not only will this make it easier on your guests (because they won’t need to stress about what to get you), you’ll also be making other people very happy.
Grab your entourage and have a volunteer day! Be it in place for your bridal shower or bachelorette party, you can turn your pre-wedding events into chances to help others. You can visit an orphanage and play with kids, visit a hospital and give gifts to the sick, or visit an elderly home to entertain the people there. Other things you can do are make gift baskets you can donate, or even organize an event where you can help build houses for people.
If you feel like you still want to register for gifts, that’s okay! You can also consider making donations in your guests’ names, and using these donations as their favors. At least this is something you won’t have to stress over (and hey, less waste too)!
Trust me, there will be a lot of things that will be left over after the celebration. There will be flowers, food, possibly favors other guests forgot to get, and more. Talk to your coordinator and come up with a plan to pack everything that’s left to be delivered to people who will be able to make the most out of it. You can send the flowers to a hospital or an elderly home, you can send the food to a charity, or even to the staff who haven’t had a chance to eat yet.
Just remember that your wedding is still all up to you, and if these ideas sound too drastic for you, don’t be disheartened! You don’t have to do everything on this list. Even the smallest change will go a long way. And if you’ve got some ideas about how you can be more socially conscious, we’d love to hear them! Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!