With prom back on this year at Toronto schools, New Circles is calling upon residents to dig through closets to donate appropriate attire for the end of high school party for those who can’t afford costs associated with the night.
Since 2008, New Circles has been helping low-income families with free new or gently used clothing for prom.
From now until June, prom apparel – dresses, shoes, purses, jewelry, suits, dress shirts and ties – are needed for New Circles’ Prom Boutique, along with new makeup (for hygienic reasons, used makeup won’t be accepted).
April 27 marks the official launch of the Prom Boutique and it will run until June, with donations urged before opening day, said Nita Saini, New Circles’ volunteer program manager.
“We served 682 last year,” she said. “We try to create a Say Yes to the Dress atmosphere. We make it really feel like a store.”
Catering to low-income families throughout the city, the prom program targets students through agencies located within the 13 priority neighbourhoods, along with schools, Saini said.
Students set up appointments to pick out a dress/suit, shoes, purse, jewelry and makeup.
Leggings, cardigans and scarves, for those who wear the hijab, are also needed, Saini said.
Dress pants with waist sizes between 28 and 34 are greatly needed, she said, along with plus-size dresses, ties and men’s shoes.
If prom clothing drives are held by the public, New Circles will arrange for pick-up, otherwise donations can be dropped off at 10 Gateway Blvd., near Don Mills Road and Finch Avenue.
“(Prom Boutique) has really taken off as the years have gone by,” Saini said, adding 50 clients sought the service in 2008.
Donations should be addressed to either Nita or Poppy.
For drop-off hours and information, visit www.newcircles.ca