Wish Upon a wedding is a nonprofit that grants weddings and vow renewals to couples facing serious illness or a life-altering circumstance. I wanted to introduce Wish Upon a Wedding to my readers who might have circumstances which would allow them to apply for a wedding with Wish Upon a Wedding and so vendors can learn how to donate their services.
The interview below is with Keri Durkin, President of Wish Upon a Wedding.
YENW: Please tell us about the genesis of Wish Upon a Wedding and how the program works?
WUAW: In 2009, founder, Liz Guthrie, was producing a large scale wedding giveaway in San Francisco, she realized that there are so many couples in need, and so many generous business owners offering to donate their time and services to a deserving couple. She found herself wishing there was a way to donate dream weddings to couples across the country. Out of the 350 couples that entered the giveaway, one bride-to-be stood out in her mind. Vanessa was battling Stage IV Hodgkin’s Lymphoma while her fiancé, an officer in the US Air Force, was deployed overseas. This couple won the Giveaway through public voting, and it was their Love Story that ultimately inspired the creation of Wish Upon a Wedding. Liz felt that there were so many other couples that deserved a day away from their illness. She created Wish Upon a Wedding with this in mind and to this day Wish Upon a Wedding has granted just over 125 wedding wishes. If there is a current medical illness or life-altering circumstance have impeded your wedding plans, Wish Upon a Wedding may be able to help. If your circumstances align with our guidelines and mission, we welcome the submittal of an application. Criteria: Life altering medical illness (most recipients have been diagnosed with cancer); No felony; Wedding to be conducted within 6 months of application
YENW: What is the application process for couples who wish to be granted a wedding?
WUAW: Couples may go to our website www.wishuponawedding.org to apply for a wish. The applications are reviewed by our volunteer board and Director of Wishes for qualification. The couples complete a verification process, background check, and interview process.
YENW: How can a vendor be involved in donating their services to Wish Upon a Wedding?
WUAW: Vendors may go to the website to apply to be a wish granter. When there is a wedding within their geography we reach out to determine if the granter is qualified and has the ability to donate for the wish
YENW: Have you ever attended one of the Wish Weddings you’ve granted?
WUAW: Yes, all board members attend a minimum of one wish per year. I have had the opportunity to attend several wishes. Attending a Wish is one of the most gratifying experiences of my lifetime. It is a day full of love, support and an opportunity to be with their family and closest support group forgetting about the illness in their lives.
YENW: What has been the most memorable Wedding Wish you’ve granted?
WUAW: WOW! They are all so memorable. Each is special in its own way. Recently, (July 10th) we granted a wish to Chase and Alexa in the hospital in New York City. It was a simple, incredibly beautiful ceremony that meant the world to this young couple that was granted as an urgent wish. The planner and wish granters were amazing. Chase and Alexa celebrated their love. Chase lost his battle with cancer 1 week later knowing he fought a tough battle with his bride by his side.
YENW: How many wishes have been granted since inception?
WUAW: Wish Upon A Wedding has granted 125 wishes since inception. We plan to grant 130 by the end of 2018.
*featured image above – Chase and Alexa. Sadly, Chase lost his battle with cancer one week after their wedding. Below, other Wish Upon a Wedding recipients.