A Canadian couple who had been planning a huge wedding decided to cancel the event and instead use the funds to help resettle a Syrian refugee family. Samantha Jackson and Farzin Yousefian had their nuptials scheduled for March, complete with a venue and caterer. The Toronto-based couple ended up getting married last month in a city hall ceremony, followed by a small reception with family and friends.

“We were in the midst of wedding planning in September when that devastating photo of 3-year-old Aylan Kurdi found on a beach came out,” Jackson told ABC News. “Like so many other people, we became acutely aware of how bad the situation was getting and how important it was to act and do something positive, so we canceled the wedding and redirected the funds.”

Jackson had been a volunteer for Ryerson University Lifeline Syria Challenge, which helps raise money for Syrian refugee families resettling in the Toronto area. The couple are now raising funds to help sponsor a family of four. “We realized how all the money we would’ve put to our wedding would be better used helping give Syrian refugee families the second chance they deserve,” said Jackson.

The organization estimates about $27,000 is needed to support and settle a family for one year. Jackson and Yousefian have raised $17,500 so far.


Contact the author at marie.lodi@jezebel.com.

Image via Shutterstock.