With last night’s Academy Awards parade of gowns and tuxes (and breathless media coverage of it all day yesterday and today) as well as the recent whirlwind of New York Fashion Week, I thought it might be good to look at a few charitable organizations dedicated to clothing.
Dress for Success is a fantastic organization that promotes the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire for the workplace and interviews, as well as a network of support, career counseling, interview skills training, and other development tools–all of it from suits to shoes to advice and resume building is donated and volunteered. They’ve been around since 1997 and with the cast-off, gently used business clothes of donors, have changed the lives of thousands and thousands of women. More than 3,000 volunteers keep the locations in in the United States, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Mexico, Poland, and the West Indies bustling. Jump in to volunteer and find out more (additionally, donate clothes, dollars, organize a suit drive, or any other of many suggested ways to help).
Empowering Through Beauty unites the beauty industry and underserved women, mostly in shelters, to strengthen networks, support relationships, and self esteem. “Style Me Beautiful” and “Beauty 101” programs give women tools and techniques to feel empowered and embrace their inner beauty and health to face the challenges of life, and the S.U.R.E. Program focuses on at-risk girls ages 10-18. (SURE stands for Successful, Unique, Respectful, and Empowered). Donate clothing and items here.
Although you may not be putting out last night’s Versace or Vera Wang with today’s recycling, the next time you’re cleaning your closets, spread the wealth.