Breast Cancer

Cancer Survivor and Photographer Donates Dream Weddings to Young Couples-You Could Win!

+ Pamela Friedman

My good friend and colleague Morag Currin recently told me about a wonderful program in Colorado. I couldn’t wait to share it with Cinco Vidas readers.

If you happen to be planning a wedding and your life has been touched by breast cancer, you could win the wedding of your dreams, completely free of charge! Cheryl Ungar, professional wedding photographer and founder of the non-profit organization “Cheryl Ungar Gives,” was diagnosed with breast cancer as a young woman. Today, 20 years a survivor, she has devised a way to give back to the cancer community that meant so much to her-by donating a dream wedding to one special couple a year.

She started it all in 2010, gathering vendors willing to donate their services and opening the door to submissions. In August, Melissa and Jeff were chosen as the winners, Melissa having recently survived breast cancer herself with Jeff’s enduring support. Eight months later, the couple enjoyed a gorgeous $30,000 wedding in Vail, Colorado, complete with wedding planner, venue, wedding cake, flowers, music, and everything else you’d expect-at absolutely no cost to them.

“The Wedding Pink is a wedding givaway,” wrote Melissa following the event, “but it has proven to be so much more than that. As Jeff and I started meeting Cheryl and the other vendors, we quickly realized that the people involved were our angels. Absolutely everyone we met was so caring and willing to help, out of the goodness of their hearts. I believe Jeff and I have made lifelong friends from this event.”

After enduring chemotherapy and grueling surgeries, Melissa felt particularly blessed to win The Wedding Pink. It took the financial burden off her and Jeff’s shoulders, freeing them and their families to just enjoy the experience. “Cancer takes a toll on the patient, but it is also a huge burden for the friends and family members involved,” Melissa wrote. “The Wedding Pink was really a gift to everyone who knows me.”

Cheryl loved the experience as well, and told Channel 7, KMGH-TV in Denver that Jeff and Melissa’s wedding “is as much of a gift to me as it is a gift to them.” She took many pictures, posted several on her website, and now is excited about the second wedding giveaway already underway. Severel vendors have already signed on, and plans are for the 2012 event to be held in the Colorado Rocky Mountains.

“If you happen to know an engaged or soon-to-be engaged couple whose lives have been recently touched by breast cancer,” Cheryl says on her site, “please forward the information along.”

Submissions are open between July 1–August 15, 2011. Simply go to Cheryl’s submissions page for more information on how to enter. And remember-though the bride-to-be may be the one touched by cancer, submissions are also open for those couples where the groom or the extended family were the ones who experienced it. As Cheryl says, the wedding giveaways are meant to do something nice for those who have experienced a difficult time with this disease in their lives.

“Next year’s wedding will not disappoint,” Cheryl writes. “We are in the process of securing an amazing team of vendors.”

Will you try to win the Wedding Pink? If you enter, keep us posted! See Cheryl’s website at Cheryl Ungar Gives.

Photo courtesy Cheryl Ungar Gives.

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