Ladies listen up, it's time to dig into your closets.
One Mid-South organization needs you to donate new or lightly worn dresses to help teenage girls in need attend their prom.
Joy Turner, co-founder of Brown Girl Dreams, said she "just started asking people, can you donate prom dresses, we need these items" and that request turned into Memphis Prom Closet.
The organization started after a principal's call for help three years ago. "He had been paying out of pocket for some of the girls to get their hair done, or buy prom dresses or shoes," said Turner.
Since then, Prom Closet has collected dozens of donated dresses for young girls in need at Northside and Douglas High Schools.
The dress giveaway is totally free.
Turner says you can see their faces fill with happiness and appreciation. For many, the prom experience lasts just one night, but for these young girls, they're touched forever by the generous layers attached to their dresses.
Last year, Timesha Cash was one of those young girls.
She struggled to find the perfect fit at Prom Closet, but then someone special stitched things together.
"A lady, she volunteered to take one of the girls who didn't find a dress out to buy a dress," said Cash, "it was me." Cash said she was shocked someone cared enough.
Cash said Memphis Prom Closet boosts confidence beyond high school's final dance. It grooms them for their first interview.
Local clothing line owner Jalona Edwards alters these donated dresses. She tailors the girls to a "T," then offers workshops on proper etiquette, hygiene and life skills.
"Whether it's presenting yourself to a dean for a college interview or in front of your speech or communications class," said Edwards, "I think it's good practice for them to go through the work of preparing themselves to look their best.
Now the organization needs your help providing 200 new or gently worn dresses to teenagers for this prom season.
You can donate any size, shape, length or bedazzled look.
So ladies, start digging for that dress you don't need, hanging out in the back of your closet, the gown with tags, or the dress you're holding on to just in case you squeeze back into it one day.
The deadline for collection is fast approaching, Memphis Prom Closet hopes to have all dresses dropped off by this Friday, Feb. 22 at 3p.m.
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