Happy World Food Day! Every October 16th, organizations around the world honor the day the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization was founded in 1945. One of my very favorite organizations Oxfam America encourages people who care about food insecurity and poverty alleviation to host a dinner to help raise awareness of these issues among their friends and family. Hubby and I are hosting our very own Hunger Banquet tonight, with a few of our closest friends in Chicago! In exchange for a yummy dinner, cooked by yours truly, we’ve asked our friends to bring a nonperishable food item or donation for Oxfam America, to help in their fight to end hunger.
All this got me thinking about the vast cornucopia that was our wedding reception…what if weddings could help end hunger? Well, it can! Check out these five tips on how you can be a do gooder bride and help end poverty and hunger in Chicago.
1. Choose a Non-Profit Caterer.
If you’re already going to spend thousands of dollars on food and beverage, why not spend your money with caterers that give back?
Inspiration Kitchens is a restaurant and a restaurant skills training center with locations in Upton Chicago and Garfield Park. In addition to serving yummies, they provide social services to the homeless and hungry in Chicago and help individuals gain skills and experience that help them get jobs in the service industry.
First Slide Pie Cafe serves much more than just pies. Community volunteers and staff servemore than 4,000 needy and homeless each month through partnerships with several social service organizations, such as Streetwise. A pie from any one of their three cafes (North Ravenswood inside the Lillstreet Art Center, North Ashland Avenue, and Manor Street) would make an awesome addition to your dessert table!
2. Donate leftover wedding food to a food rescue program.
Maybe your venue is really strict about the caterers that you’re allowed to use. Don’t worry! You can still help by working with your caterer to donate any uneaten food to a local food rescue center. You can arrange with your caterer to have a center like the Greater Chicago Food Depository come and pick up leftovers you have, after the ceremony. Couples would probably cry if they knew how much food caterers usually throw away after their receptions. By donating, you can cut down on waste by doing something good.
3. Ask guests to bring nonperishable food items to the reception.
Unless it’s a potluck, it’s usually considered impolite to ask guests to bring their own food to your wedding, but you won’t get any notes from Mrs. Manners for this third idea. You can follow the example of this wonderful British couple and ask your guests to bring a nonperishable food item or make a donation to a local homeless center, in lieu of wedding gifts.