Ways to Give Back on Your Wedding Day

Ways to Give Back on Your Wedding Day
Courtesy of Donna Morgan

Do you ever feel so lucky to have found love that you’re inspired to make a difference? As you and your future spouse plan for your special day, use your inner happiness to find creative ways to give back. Share your love with the world!

From the moment you are engaged, most friends and family will tell you that your wedding day is all about you. Well, that’s true, but more than that, your wedding is about the coming together of families and friends and creating a special new bond. Guests often travel long and far to support you. So as you plan a day filled with love to celebrate the happiness you’ve found, why not make it a goal to put a smile on someone else's face, too?
Here are three ways to "give back" and show your appreciation on your wedding day.


I was recently told a story of a couple who hand-wrote thank you notes for every single guest before their wedding day. The bride and groom spent an afternoon personalizing notes with a fond memory or piece of gratitude, then stuffed the envelopes and set them aside. On the night before this couple’s wedding, each guest found a personalized note on their hotel pillow.  They were shocked and overjoyed to know that their support and presence at this wedding hadn't gone unnoticed!  A hand-written note may be a simple gesture, but the feeling and meaning behind it can go so far.

 No matter what the method, it is important to take the time to really thank your families, the wedding party, friends, and loved ones for being there and supporting you, both in the months leading up to your wedding and on your wedding day. 

Insider Tip: If the hotel your guests are staying in offers a turndown service, they can take care of the card delivery for you! Simply ask in advance and make sure to properly write out your guests’ full names on the front of each card.

Alternately, you can try this same idea by including a small note inside of each guests’ escort card envelope, or even on the back of their menus. They’ll love the unexpected surprise!


Another way to give back on your special day is by making a charitable donation.  Instead of a wedding favor, some couples choose to donate toward a meaningful cause in their guests’ names.  Frame a small sign in the center of each table or leave a note at each guest’s place setting showing that you made a donation on their behalf.  How thoughtful!

Open to a creative registry?  Some couples include the option to donate to a charity on their registry, too!  This gives your guests the option to make a donation to a worthwhile cause as opposed to buying you another serving platter. Support a charity close to your heart and feel good about giving back. The website IDoFoundation gives couples the ability to choose their charity of choice and leads guests to donate securely online, in lieu of a gift.


Wedding Flowers

The time has come to turn in for the night but all of your flowers and beautiful centerpieces are still looking stellar. Now what? Consider donating your flowers to a local retirement home or hospice care center. Some organizations, like Petals with Purpose will even pick them up and deliver them for you. Now that is guaranteed to brighten someone’s day!

Your Gown

They say you will never look as beautiful as you do on your wedding day, so parting with your gown might feel impossible. Remember this: If your gown made you feel so amazing on your Big Day, think of how it will make a bride in need feel on hers. Instead of letting your gown collect dust in the closet, donate it!  One organization, Brides Against Breast Cancer accepts worn wedding gown donations.  They run a fantastic program that raises money for wellness and education programs to help those affected by breast cancer.

Other Wedding Items

Other items you might be able to donate include wedding-day accessories, table linens, candles or vases, and any other decorations. You can bring these items to a nearby Goodwill center or other thrift shop.  It feels good to give back!


Whether you demonstrate gratitude to your guests, donate to a charity, or repurpose your goods after your special day ends, you really can find ways to give back. Your wedding can be more than a big party – you can use your day to have a positive impact on those around you. Share the love!

--Julie Lindenman

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