Cinderella Project makes fairy tale a reality for local high school students

CREATED Apr 19, 2014

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It's almost prom season, and a program known as the Cinderella Project is helping make some local high school students in need, feel like the prettiest girls at the ball.

The one-day prom dress giveaway was held Saturday at the Destiny Youth Plaza in Milwaukee. It provided everything but the glass slipper, so prom will be a night to remember for nearly 1,000 local young women.

"There are so many dresses to choose from," says high school senior, Kimberly McKissic. "You also get to pick out shoes and jewelry or accessories. Everyone here makes you feel really comfortable."

Community volunteers act as personal stylists, or fairy godmothers.

"I've always loved fashion and clothes, and I've always loved making people feel better about themselves," says Ashlee Brooks, one of the volunteer stylists. "So this is kind of the perfect union of those things for me."

In addition, each girl gets personalized hair and make-up tips. They also attend a self-esteem workshop to re-enforce that the greatest beauty of all comes from the inside.

For organizers of the event, it's not just about giving them the perfect prom look, it's about instilling confidence.

"We want them to know they can be a business owner and a big contributor to our community," says Lisette Gadzuric, the President and founder of Cinderella Project MKE. "A lot of the girls come in really shy and timid, and I think they leave feeling really pretty and amazing."

"I've learned you need to see yourself as beautiful each and every day," McKissic says. "Don't compare yourself to others. Be yourself."

The Cinderella Project in Milwaukee collects dresses all year round. The organization is also completely self-funded, so it's always thankful for any monetary donations.