When Willie and Carol Fowler found out that their daughter was canceling her wedding with just 40 days notice, they were prepared to lose their deposits.
But thanks to a little creativity, this Georgia family turned what would have been a financial write-off into a beautiful act of kindness.
Carol told ABC News that her husband had a vision:
“”I was in the process of canceling out the venue and he said, ‘No, what we’ll do is donate it to Hosea Feed the Hungry.'”
When she was younger, their daughter had volunteered with the organization, which helps homeless in the Atlanta area.
And just like that, the Fowler Family Celebration of Love was born.
On September 15, two hundred guests were bused to Villa Christina for a four-course meal complete with coconut shrimp and salmon.
A rep for the non-profit said they originally thought it was a practical joke: “It’s a very creme de la creme wedding venue, so to say that you’re going to host 200 homeless individuals at Villa Christina – it sounds like a prank call.”
Instead, it was a chance to give back to those in need.
“It was a wonderful event. It brought tears to my eyes,” said Carol. “If you have canceled an event, do not walk away. Pick up the phone and call your favorite charity and offer it to them. We’re regular, working people and anybody can do this. This is not star stuff.”
The Fowler family hopes that with the help of sponsorship, they’ll be able to make it an annual event, complete with motivational speakers and educational resources for participants.
“If we could just inspire one youth in that crowd to rise above the situation today and be a very responsible member of society tomorrow, that would be extremely rewarding,” Carol said.