A Second Chance at a First Impression


The Umbrella by Marie Bashkirteff
Timidly, she entered the Boutique and said, "I was sent here to get clothes for an interview."

Shamefully, she apologized for her attire. "I'm sorry I'm dressed this way, it's all I have".

Her clothing was worn and torn. She wore bike pants under her jeans as a remedy for the split seams gaping at her thighs.

These days, I've been volunteering for Dress For Success, a non-profit agency that helps women enter and/or re-enter the workplace by providing them with appropriate clothing in order to help them make that critical first impression.

Many of our clients are homeless, are re-entering society after incarceration or escaping abusive relationships.

Several of my friends and family have donated clothing, handbags, shoes and jewelry to this cause and I want you to know that you have made a difference in someone's life.

My co-volunteers are Myaann Payne, an exceptionally talented fashion stylist and Erika, an economist. Together, our goal is to dress, counsel and instill confidence in the ladies who come through the door.

"Here's the plan ..." I said as I led her to the dressing room. "Make yourself comfortable, and we will bring you clothes to try on". 

A classic black pant suit, a printed top, black pumps, handbag, coordinating jewelry, bra, camisole and panties completed her 'look'.

As she stepped out of the dressing area and saw herself in the mirror, her shoulders straightened and her head lifted but it was her facial expression that spoke volumes.  

"You all have changed my life today", she said.

You know, I really think we did.

Mission accomplished.

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