HARRIS COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL) – The COVID-19 pandemic cancelled many of life’s most memorable moments last year, but as vaccines roll out and cases are on the decline, life and it’s events are beginning to start back up.
This means that milestone events like high school graduations and proms are back on and the Harris County School District social services building, The H.O.P.E. Center is helping make sure all students have the perfect attire for the occasion.
The H.O.P.E. Center, which stands for Helping Other People Excel, hosted a Prom-a-palooza event from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Students in need of a prom dress were invited to come enjoy refreshments, gift bags with essential items like gum and floss, and shop for prom dresses and shoes without the cost.
Harris County School’s Director of social services La Chandra Brundage said today was about more than just prom dresses.
“We’ve been able to service some of our students who are homeless or unaccompanied, and so not only was it a Prom-a-palooza, it turned into a day of connection and to realize what other services we could offer,” said Brundage. “So we had students leave with additional items, additional resources, and additional connections that we’re going to make, and just some linkages that we could make in the community for them.”
The center has an abundance of dresses in a range of sizes due to the cancellation of prom last year, allowing them to save those dresses and continue to add them as the year went on.
Brundage said this event has helped them make sure every student in need has the opportunity to find their perfect dress without the financial burden.
“And it’s a great financial burden lifted off a parent because the dresses that we’ve given out today, they were new and we’ve seen some of the price tags and it’s a pluck of money,” said Brundage. “And so we were happy to be able to assist some of those families. We had moms that teared up, we had girls that say they’ve never had a dress before and they were happy.”
Brundage said about 20 girls had walked away with dresses from the event, but because prom isn’t until May 1, and they have such a plethora of dresses left girls are more than welcome to come find their perfect dress at the H.O.P.E. Center.
She also added that girls who are not going to prom but need a dress for other formal events can come and find those as well.