The pandemic has brought weddings to a screeching halt. When Chicago couple Emily Bugg and Billy Lewis canceled their big bash, they decided to use the catering and venue deposits to do some good in their community.
The couple asked their caterer to take the $5,000 deposit and turn it into Thanksgiving dinners for those in need across Chicago. Bugg is an outreach worker at Thresholds, a nonprofit mental health provider in Chicago. The organization helps people with conditions such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and major depression, so they decided this would be a great cause to donate the food too.
Their donation provided food for 200 people with serious mental illnesses and substance use conditions over the holiday. The couple didn’t stop with food. They also took the money that would otherwise go towards their venue deposit and donated it to the Epilepsy Foundation. The money helped compensate for forgone funds lost when the foundation had to cancel their big end of year fundraiser.
Caterer Heidi Moorman Coudal, who made the meals, told CNN that most people ask for their deposit back or accept it as a sunk cost, but “For them to think about doing something for the greater good is just really heartwarming.” As for Bugg and Lewis, they decided to go ahead with their marriage and opted for a small city hall ceremony.
Image source: CNN