Sisters Empowering Women, Inc. is giving away free gowns to those in need for homecoming season for students in Pinellas, Hillsborough, and Pasco Counties. The photo above shows one of this year’s lucky recipients.
TAMPA — Sisters Empowering Women, Inc. (SEW) has free evening gowns for girls to wear this homecoming season. The Gowns for Girls program provides evening gowns to girls whose families can’t afford to purchase a dress.
To qualify, a child must receive free or reduced lunch, live in a single-parent household with limited income, be in foster care, or living in a home that is at or below the poverty level. Special circumstances are sometimes considered for those who may not meet the outlined requirements.
“Homecoming is a special time for a high school student,” said SEW President Karin Davis-Thompson. “We know that with these tough economic times, many families are finding themselves in a financial pinch.”
Davis-Thompson said many families who a year ago may not have needed assistance are now finding it hard to pay the mortgage, and a gown for homecoming seems out of reach.
Amber Congae, SEW’s board co-chair, said the organization has assisted more than 150 girls since the program’s inception.
“It’s wonderful to see the looks on their faces when they find the perfect gown,” Conage said, noting that half of the gowns are new, while the others have been donated by various organizations and members of the community.
Gowns are provided to girls living in Hillsborough, Pinellas, and Polk Counties. Appointments are REQUIRED. Contact SEW at (813) 593-3924 or e-mail sistersempoweringwomen@gmail for an appointment or to donate a gown.
There is also limited assistance available for hair, make-up and shoes.