Giving Back is a Key 2022 Wedding Trend for Engaged Couples

Dec 7, 2021

For today’s engaged couples, celebrating their love and commitment isn’t their only priority, they also want to ‘do good’.

VOW for Girls commissioned a new study examining “giving back” behaviors of 1,000 engaged couples across the US. The findings affirmed that including a charitable component as part of their wedding is an important trend for today’s couples and there were a number of ways couples were looking to support as well as who they were looking to support.

The study was conducted by The Wedding Report in conjunction with VOW for Girls. The research found that 64%* of engaged couples are likely to support a charitable cause as part of their upcoming weddings or associated events, such as bridal showers and gift registries. That’s equivalent to 1.58 million weddings in 2022 based on wedding market data.

“Now more than ever, couples are looking to align their purchasing dollars and their values — including with their weddings,” says Clay Dunn, CEO of VOW for Girls. “More than $60 billion will be spent on weddings in the U.S this year alone — the potential to make an impact while celebrating love is enormous. By aligning with nonprofit organizations like VOW for Girls around their weddings, couples have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create a positive impact.”

The findings revealed today’s couples don’t want to be alone in giving back – they plan to make charitable giving a part of their guests’ experiences, as well as incorporate charitable giving beyond asking for monetary gifts:

66% of respondents said they would likely consider adding a donation option to their wedding registry to ask their friends and family to donate to a cause in lieu of a gift.

72% of couples are likely to hire a wedding vendor that donates a portion of their profits to a cause.

67% of people surveyed are more likely to include gifts on their registry if a portion of proceeds support a cause, versus similar gift items that do not benefit a cause-related organization.

The survey also examined the top causes couples are interested in supporting as part of their wedding and revealed that:

Respondents’ top preference (67%) is to align their weddings with causes** that support women and girls. This was followed by education, poverty, and health related-issues, which commonly intersect with women’s and girls’ rights.

On the issue of child marriage in particular, 62% of people surveyed acknowledged their familiarity with the global issue, while 63% were likely to support ending child marriage with their own wedding.

“Girls around the globe were hit hard by the global pandemic — locking them out of educational and economic opportunities, and leading to an increase in child marriage globally,” adds Clay Dunn. “With more than 12 million children becoming brides every year, women and girls need our support now more than ever before. As weddings resume, it’s heartening to see so many generous couples say they want to give back while supporting women and girls. This is a tremendous opportunity for VOW and our work to support girls to live lives they love.”

Clay Dunn, VOW for Girls CEO

About VOW for Girls

From wedding registry donations to partner product purchases, everything donated to VOW (that’s 100% of donations!) goes directly to community-driven efforts to help girls around the world. Our grantees, which are mainly women-led local organizations, use the funding we provide to directly support girls.

Twelve million girls a year, some as young as 8, become child brides. VOW is a global movement of the wedding industry community, partners and couples who are dedicated to a world where no child is ever a bride and where every girl has the chance to live the life she loves.

If you would like more information about how you can VOW your wedding or simply get involved in VOW’s work please visit the get involved page.


*Preferred ways couples want to support a cause as part of a wedding (Participants were not limited to a single choice)

Make a donation in honor of your guests and/or in lieu of favors, Request donations in addition to or instead of gifts, Register for items where a portion of the sale price benefits a cause, Turn your bridal shower into a fundraiser, Choose vendors and/or services that support a nonprofit, None, I don’t want to support a cause as part of my wedding

**Top causes engaged couples want to support as part of their wedding (Participants were not limited to a single choice)

Girls’ and Women’s Rights, Education, Poverty, Health-related Issues, Environment/ Climate Change, Animal Rights


Header Photo Credit: Silver Arrow Creative Photography