Dress for Success needs plus-sized clothing, toiletries
I spent yesterday at the Dress for Success boutique on North Howard Avenue in Tampa to cover this story. Kim Washington, who works with Thirty-One Gifts (those personalized tote bags you see everywhere), got her team to collect hundreds of purses to donate to Dress for Success.
The mission of Dress for Success is to help disadvantaged women get free outfits and interview skills they need to land jobs. Women are referred through various agencies and make appointments with a personal shopper. They come in with their heads down and leave a little more confident.
It was the first time I'd ever been in the boutique. It's an old police substation that has been totally remodeled, with a cute waiting room in the front that has magazines and snacks. Around the corner are racks of suits and blouses and tops, pants and skirts. In a little room off to the side are shoes, purses and accessories.
The women each get two suits for interviews, plus toiletries like deodorant and hair dye. If they get a job, they get to come back and get some additional pieces to wear to work. So, if they're working in a medical center they can get scrubs, or if they're working at Wal-Mart, they can get khakis, and so on.
I met some great volunteers, and they pointed out the plus-sized rack. It was very depleted. They get plenty of small and average suits (hypothetically because people tend to expand out of them), and they're grateful for all of those, but they really need items for women size 20 and up. If you have plus-sized clothing you're willing to donate, Dress for Success would be a great choice. They also always need toiletries.
Check out all the donation locations here. You can also follow the Facebook page, where each week volunteers spell out a specific wishlist. Also, find out more about Kim Washington's Thirty-One team here.
Thanks, Dress for Success, for having me out yesterday!
Deal Diva Stephanie