herald

Thursday 16 August 2018

Dressing for success helps to give women that extra confidence inside and out

This week I've been busy working on a project very close to my heart, namely Dress for Success. The service is for any woman who has been out of the workforce for a while. We bring them in and outfit them for an interview. We give them a HR training session and try to give them confidence inside and out.

Our clients are a broad spectrum of people. It's women who have fallen out of basic education, women with PhD's and women separated and having to work again and returning to the workplace. The clothes are merely a tool to get to where you need to go, we help them unpick the insecurities and give them the confidence to get the job.

Some 57pc of the women we serve get the job, which is a good average in this environment, but we need to support our service.

We are trying to open up another strand of funding because we are completely over-subscribed. We have around 100 women on the rolling waiting list at the minute.

We need clothes, but more than that, we need money. We have an amazing group of volunteers and they're all skill specific so they know what they're talking about. We don't get any funding from the Government for the service.

We were only born in 2011, but now have a body of evidence to support the work we're doing. We've dressed over 800 women at this stage and we know our service very well.

launch

On Wednesday, I was at House on Leeson Street to launch our new fundraising campaign. I gave Keelin Shanley a call for the launch, she's a really good friend of mine, we actually went to school together. Blathnaid ni Chofaigh came along too, and I was honoured to have them both on board.

Our new initiative, Sitting Room Swish, is all about letting women help the service, from the comfort of their own homes. I know for a fact women have wardrobes full of stuff they never wear so we're asking people to gather your friends around, bring all the stuff you don't wear and auction it among yourselves to raise funds. It's a new season and it's also a really good excuse for a catch up.

Yesterday, I was at the wedding of a good friend - the drag queen Veda Beaux Reves. She married a wonderful man named Leo and they had an amazing party in McGrattan's.

This evening I'm going to Culture Night with my kids and then home to collapse on the couch.

For more info check out www.dressforsuccessdublin.org

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