Wine Wednesday brings young professionals together for wine and philanthropy. Wine Wednesday brings young professionals together for wine and philanthropy. Wine Wednesday brings young professionals together for wine and philanthropy. (Photo: Wine Wednesday Facebook)

How to drink wine and save the world at the same time

A group of enthusiasts sparked a charitable movement that starts with nothing more than a bottle of wine.

Who knew drinking wine could do so much good?

For a group of young professionals living in the coastal metropolis of Tel Aviv, Israel, the combination of wine and philanthropy was a no-brainer – and sparked a worldwide movement. It's called Wine Wednesday, and it might be coming to a city near you.

It's a simple process. You register for a Wine Wednesday event, invite friends and charge them a nominal fee to attend, which goes to a charity of your choice. Each guest is expected to bring a bottle of wine. It's like a fundraising gala minus the exorbitant dinner costs and fancy wardrobe.

A pair of Wine Wednesday attendees mark the occasion with a selfieA pair of Wine Wednesday attendees in Tel Aviv mark the occasion with a selfie. (Photo: Wine Wednesday)

The Israel events have been going on since 2013, raising money for charities ranging from anti-bullying and disability awareness to homelessness and affordable eye care. They often attract hundreds of guests and have been wildly popular in Tel Aviv. Recently, organizers decided to take the movement global. On Sept. 14, Wine Wednesday Global featured 15 cities – including Amsterdam, Berlin, Boston, Buenos Aires, El Salvador, Los Angeles, Madrid, Nairobi, New York, Rio and Warsaw – all hosting events benefitting local charities and celebrating good wine and even better company.

This coming week, the original Wine Wednesday organizers are hosting a rooftop event in Tel Aviv that will benefit a local nonprofit organization that provides food vouchers for the needy. The movement has become so popular that even the mayor of Tel Aviv, Ron Huldai, is expected to attend.

An appointed person makes a five-minute speech about the organization chosen to raise money for during each Wine Wednesday event. Guests can also speak to the appointee to learn more about the organization and possibly get involved.

Wine Wednesday guests share a hug.Wine Wednesday guests share a hug. (Photo: Wine Wednesday)

“Recognizing that we have developed a model that 'works,' we believe it’s time to share our simple, but fun formula for others so that they can raise money for important initiatives in their cities around the world – a type of open-source philanthropy,” Caylee Talpert said on the organization's website. Talpert co-founded Wine Wednesday along with Emma Datny and Guy Seeman. “We are inviting individuals around the world to try out this model, raise money and awareness, and bring people together over wine to support important projects in their own communities.”

Band performs at Wine WednesdayMusic is a common feature of Wine Wednesday parties. (Photo: Wine Wednesday)

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How to drink wine and save the world at the same time
A group of enthusiasts in Tel Aviv, Israel sparked a charitable movement that starts with nothing more than a bottle of wine.