WHEATON – As a wedding planner, Kristin Anderson has seen her fair share of food go to waste.
Anderson is the owner of the Wheaton-based business Weddings and Events by Kristin, which has been around for almost 10 years.
“The amount of food that we throw away at weddings can be so crazy, especially if it is a buffet-style wedding or a family-style wedding,” Anderson said. “The food just goes in the garbage, and there’s people out there who need food who are hungry.”
About a year ago, her company started donating leftover wedding food as well as centerpieces to food pantries, homeless shelters and churches. Their efforts were recently spotlighted in a segment on the television show “Windy City LIVE.”
She recently dropped off some leftover food at a homeless shelter in Chicago, and she would like to serve more shelters, churches and food pantries in the suburbs.
“We took the centerpieces to the homeless shelter too, and they were so appreciative of those, because they never get flowers,” Anderson said. “It brightens things up.”
The brides in her weddings have been on board with the initiative as well, Anderson said.
“They are super excited,” she said. “They paid for the food, so why let it go to waste?”
Her company is in need of a refrigerator to store the leftover food until she can bring it to a shelter.
“My refrigerator at home isn’t big enough to hold some of this food,” Anderson said.
Those who would like to donate a refrigerator can contact her through her website at www.weddingsandeventsbykristin.com.
Anderson said she is happy her efforts are having such an impact.
Her ultimate goal is to get as many people as she can donating food, including other wedding planners along with venues and restaurants.
“We’ve gotten such good responses, and it feels so good to help homeless people that I want everyone else to try to do it too,” Anderson said.