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More of What Matters, Featuring: SoKind Registry

More of What Matters, Featuring: So Kind Registry **Editor Note: Thank you SoKind Registry for your ongoing support as a National Partner and believer in the BSB Mission!** bride Friends and family. That’s what wedding receptions boil down to, right? It would be a lot less work and cost if a wedding consisted solely of a ceremony. No need to worry about finding a venue or coordinating entertainment. No need to worry about menus or seating arrangements. Yet despite the hassle, many people still choose to commemorate one of life’s biggest events with a celebration. Meredith9 Why? Because, as humans, we’re hardwired for connection. Connection is what gives our lives purpose and meaning. And connection is what we crave when we celebrate momentous occasions. We want our loved ones to share in our joy and to support us with their presence. Yet U.S. consumer culture has created an expectation in this country that weddings must be extravagant affairs in order to be special, thereby distorting some of the most important milestones of our lives. Celebrations that should be joyful and meaningful are now often occasions that generate stress, waste, and debt. Sunset chaser SoKind Registry is a registry service designed to provide options for those of us who want to plan celebrations that reflect our lifestyles, promote our values, and enhance our lives. SoKind is for people who want to host more environmentally friendly celebrations, as well as for folks who simply refuse to start a new chapter in their lives with a mountain of debt. It’s for people who don’t view their wedding as an opportunity to impress, but rather as an opportunity to involve their friends and family in one of the most important occasions of their lives. fashion-men-vintage-colorful So go ahead, be creative. What gifts do you truly want? Donations to your favorite charity? Home renovation help? Catering help for the big day? A museum membership? Through SoKind, you can register for gifts of time, experience, and skill, as well as traditional material gifts and secondhand items. The registry is entirely customizable, so the possibilities are endless! Here’s to more fun and less stuff… to more joy and less stress… and to more love and less waste! For more information about setting up your wedding, or milestone, registry visit SoKind Registry today! 

Guest Post: 5 Organizations Fighting Against Child Marriage, via Heartful.ly

Planning a wedding is exciting! From Pinterest perfection to generations of family and traditions, weddings are the ultimate celebration of love. And while planning your dream wedding can be stressful, I’ll wager that the easiest decision you ever made was saying YES! when your partner popped the question. Unfortunately, this is a distant fairytale for far too many brides-to-be. An estimated 39,000 girls become child brides every single day. This stat is almost too difficult to process. You might even be thinking, of course this awful, but what difference can you and I really make? What I’ve learned as a former Peace Corps Volunteer and founder of an organization that works with over 1,000 nonprofits worldwide, is that the world’s problems are not insurmountable when we tackle them together. There is good news. Hundreds of nonprofits and thousands of dedicated, passionate people around the world are fighting to ending child marriage. Below are five nonprofits in particular that are doing fantastic work. Learn about their efforts and consider incorporating these worthy organizations into your wedding day or bridal shower.  Too Young to Wed sinclair_workshop-11-1024x684 Source: TooYoungToWed.org Too Young To Wed’s (TYTW) mission is to protect girls’ rights and end child marriage. Through the use of powerful portraits and short films of child brides, TYTW serves as the bridge, connecting girls’ stories to governments, policymakers, and the public. TYTW’s Adolescent Girls Photography Workshops provide survivors and girls at-risk of child marriage a chance to heal, tell their own stories, and return to their communities as leaders in the fight against child marriage. Global Grassroots screen-shot-2016-09-08-at-2-03-25-pm Source: GlobalGrassroots.org Global Grassroots’ Young Women’s Academy for Conscious Change offers a curriculum for vulnerable yet motivated recent high school graduates in Uganda who wish to initiate social change in their communities. They focus on issues such as early marriage, teen pregnancy, street children & school drop-outs. Partnered with Cornerstone Development, the Academy offers social entrepreneurship skills, leadership training, personal transformation exercises, mindfulness practices & university scholarships.   CREA pict_large Source: CreaWorld.org CREA’s “It’s My Body!” campaign will inform 200 adolescent girls in India about their sexual and reproductive rights through the medium of sports. Through empowering young girls, CREA hopes to initiate the process of building an understanding among the girls on connections among control over their own bodies, sexuality, health, leadership, diversity, and rights.   Kakenya’s Dream 5663431096_4f3d78e434_z Source: KakenyasDream.org The Kakenya Center for Excellence seeks to empower and motivate young girls through education to become agents of change and to break the cycle of destructive cultural practices in Maasai, Kenya such as early forced marriage and female genital mutilation. Each camp session instills leadership skills, team building, and basic health education, while also teaching at-risk girls to speak up and prevent harmful traditional practices.   Afghan Institute of Learning pict_original Source: AfghanInstituteofLearning.Org Each year, the Afghan Institute of Learning aims to provide education, health services and training in human rights, leadership and health to at least 70,000 adolescent girls. By training girls a variety of vocational and leadership skills, the organization hopes to provide women with a greater degree of independence and put them on a trajectory of success. _______________________ About The Contributor: Kate Glantz is the co-founder and CEO of Heartful.ly, a wedding registry for charitable giving. Heartful.ly connects generous couples and their communities to over 1,000 development projects around the world. Learn how you can share your happily ever at www.heartful.ly.