POLK COUNTY, Fla. (CW44 News At 10) – A local Polk County Organization is giving out free prom dresses to students who can’t afford to buy one!
The organization called Project Prom has thousands of dresses available for teens at the Lakeland Square Mall.READ MORE: Officials Investigating Two Possible Monkeypox Cases In Florida
Summer Gipson is a high schooler in Polk County and says she got her dress at Project Prom.
“When I found my dress it was nice to actually know that ‘It’s over, I finally found one.’ and it didn’t cost anything on my mom. My mom doesn’t have to worry about putting all this money into a dress. When I saw it, I was like ‘wow that’s a really pretty dress,’” said Gipson.
At Project Prom, Gipson and other high schoolers all over the county are able to get their prom or dance dresses for free.
“Some people don’t really have money to buy dresses like that,” said Gipson.
Samantha McCain is the executive director of the organization and says “Prom can be so expensive, it can get up to $2,000 if you do a fancy dinner or get a limo, so being able to provide at least the dress for them can help with that financial burden.”READ MORE: Pinellas County Releases New Evacuation Zones
She says all the dresses in the shop are donated from students who have graduated or who no longer need their dress.
“Once they find the dress that they want, they just go up to our checkout counter and sign a pledge saying that they will refrain from risky behaviors,” said McCain.
Those behaviors mean doing drugs, drinking, and texting while driving.
“You shouldn’t be doing drugs anyways. There’s no point of it. I mean, when you get older, that’s your decision, but right now, all we should be focused on is school and the upcoming events we have,” said Gipson.
McCain says other volunteer students help shoppers find their dresses and no matter what, Project Prom is a a place of positivity.
“It lights up their world, seeing some of the students try on dresses and the way they look in it and the sparkles in their eyes really makes all of our work worth it,” said McCain.MORE NEWS: Tampa Bay's Housing Market Sees Intense Bidding Wars
The last shopping day available for the organization is April 9 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.