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wedding day is traditionally a time for couples to celebrate a new stage in their life together. However, many people don’t realize that your special day can also be a wonderful opportunity


to help improve the lives of those in need. Hector Hernandez, a Cap- tain at Fire Station 85 and his fiancee Anne Buchanan, VP of Human Resources for BCBGMAXAZRIAGROUP, have chosen to do just that for their upcoming nuptials. In lieu of wedding gifts, they’ve asked their family and friends to donate to the Widows, Orphans, and Disabled Fire- men’s Fund in their name. “Hector and I started planning our wedding as soon as we


got engaged. When discussing wedding gifts we both felt strongly that a traditional registry wasn’t for us,” Anne Buchanan told us. “We are extremely fortunate to have so much in our lives, and asking our family and friends to buy wedding gifts just felt wrong. I proposed the option of asking for donations to our favorite charity in lieu of gifts. When sharing this idea with friends I was directed to www.idofoundation.org which is an online tool for creating a charitable wedding.” The I Do Foundation is a non-profit that was founded in 2002


to help couples connect with charitable causes like the Widows, Or- phans, and Disabled Firemen’s Fund for their wedding. As Anne puts it, “It’s important to remember that gifts of charity keep on giving and who


doesn’t love to be a part of that?” The I Do Foundation offers couples a number of different options for raising charitable contribu- tions for their wedding, including setting up their own personal wedding website and partnering with a major retailer such as Macys or Target for their wedding registry, with a percentage of registry item sales going to the cause of their choice. This is a great choice for those who don’t want to entirely forgo the traditional gift registry but still want to help support a charity.


The couple has created a website that allows visitors to donate


to the Widows, Orphans, and Disabled Firemen’s Fund in honor of their nuptials. The donation page can be found at http://tinyurl.com/78ykpy2. However, raising funds for charity isn’t their only goal. “We hope to raise money for the WODFF but more importantly our objective is to raise awareness about the option of creating a charitable website in lieu of accepting gifts.” The website will be live until their wedding in July of 2012.


Hector and Anne also prove that helping others with your


wedding plans doesn’t mean ignoring the romance in your relationship. “Hector proposed during a horse carriage ride through Central Park this past September,” said Anne. “It was a special moment in time that we’ll cherish forever.”


May 2012 • 45


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