Help fill the Plano Prom Closet with 4,000 dresses for deserving teens
A Plano event is poised to make prom dress dreams come true for the 15th year. The 2024 Prom Closetat St. Andrew Methodist Church will open its doors in late February to distribute thousands of formal gowns, accessories, and shoes to deserving teens - free of charge.
But first, they need the merchandise.
Organizers are now accepting donations of dresses (sizes 0-30), jewelry, shoes, handbags, and wraps. Items should be cleaned and as "like new" as if they were being taken to a picky consignment store for resale.
Donations may be dropped off just inside the north entry of St. Andrew, 1401 Mira Vista Blvd., Plano, on a designated dress rack. Drop-off days and times are 8:30 am-8:30 pm Monday-Thursday, 9 am-4 pm Saturday, and 9 am-12 pm Sunday. (For the north entrance, they say, look for the covered walkway and sign on the building.)
An Amazon wish list is available here for anyone who would like to help by purchasing items, which will be shipped directly to the church. They expect to make about 4,000 gowns available for distribution.
In addition, online registration (for shoppers and volunteers) opens Monday, January 22.
Volunteers act as personal shopping assistants for each girl.Photo courtesy of Prom Closet
A service of the Women of St. Andrew Methodist Church, Prom Closet allows teens the chance to "shop for" free dresses, shoes, and accessories in a boutique-style setting, complete with a (volunteer) personal shopper. The event has grown from assisting 35 teen girls when it started in 2009, to 1,060 in 2023, organizers say.
And they're not just from the Dallas area: "Over the years, Prom Closet has welcomed girls from across Texas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma as well as exchange students from Germany, Poland, Switzerland, and Thailand," organizers say in a release.
The 2024 shopping event will take place February 20-22 & 24, and February 26- March 2.
It is open to any high school girl from anywhere, no questions asked, but shoppers must register online to book an appointment. There are 35 shopping slots per each 90-minute time frame. A few rules:
- Shopping is by appointment only.
- Each student must be present to shop for her own dress.
- Each shopper is allowed to bring along just one guest, age 16 or older.
Additionally, volunteers for the shopping days must register online, be 18 years or older, and complete a background check.
The Prom Closet is set up as boutique filled with thousands of dresses and accessories.Photo courtesy of Prom Closet
Prom Closet was created in 2009 to provide a unique shopping experience for young ladies for whom going to prom was financially out of reach.
“Not only is the need great, but the impact the dress makes on the girl and her family is immeasurable," says founder Devra Helffrich. "Each volunteer strives to provide an uplifting experience for the young ladies letting them know they are loved, and they are beautiful. There are countless beautiful and emotional stories of girls and their families who have received prom dresses and accessories.”