When Mutaz Mango and Basma Omar were planning their wedding, like any other couple, they wanted to make sure their day was one to remember.
But instead of wasting money on lavish awnings and imported flowers, Mango and Omar teamed up with local nonprofit Collateral Repair Project to create a seriously unforgettable experience.
On October 2, the couple invited over 200 refugees from Amman’s Hashmi al-Shamali neighbourhood to join in their celebration.
Those invited came from Syria, Iraq, Palestine, Sudan, Yemen and Somalia.
“When we first walked in [to the party], we were overwhelmed with so many people who were genuinely happy for us,” Mango told The Jordan Times earlier this month. “Real human joy has no borders.”
The day saw each and every guest treated to food, drinks and entertainment, allowing them to enjoy the moment and forget about their worries, if only for a day.
“Mutaz and Basma were keen to help by providing food to these refugee families, since not having food is a critical trigger for many families in the Collateral Repair Project community to take risky decisions, like pulling children out of school to beg on the streets or even returning back to their war torn countries,” wrote Elena Habersky, program manager at the Collateral Repair Project.
“Unable to work by law and using all their saved money for rent and food, after a few months, it can become near impossible for a family to put food on the table or pay their rent as their savings are all but gone,” she added.
The couple made the decision to spend their wedding day with those in need, after the UN announced it had made the decision to cut funding to the food aid program in Jordan – which had previously supplied nourishment for 229,000 refugees.
The couple will continue their goodwill by donating any remaining money saved for their ceremony to fundraising initiatives in their surrounding neighbourhoods.