SHRUB OAK, N.Y. Prom chatter is, as expected, clouding the halls of Lakeland High School, but one club is aiming to shift the conversation to a more charitable route.
Lakelands Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica, or Spanish Honor Society, is hosting Dress It Forward, a campaign to have prom dresses or evening dresses donated to the school to be given to those who cant afford them. The campaign is sponsored by Bloomingdales in White Plains and Operation Prom .
Since it is this time of year where everyones talking about prom, were so fortunate that we can go out to the store and just buy something. Some people are fighting, making sure they dont have the same dress as someone else, said Katie Esposito, a senior and Spanish Honor Society officer. But there are girls out there who cant even afford one dress, so its nice to just pay it forward.
The campaign, which began last week and ends Friday, asks anyone with evening dresses or prom dresses to donate them by dropping them off at any of the district's schools.
Even male members of the club are on board, including club officer and senior Sergio Calle, who says prom night is a night when the students try to look their best, and its great to be able to help someone who might not have the means to do so.
Prom is only one night. Theres no adult prom, or proms later on. So if we can help to make one night special, I think its great, he said.
All of the officers, including Calle, Esposito, and seniors Colleen Riordan and Donika Brucaj, agreed: Prom is something to look forward to, not to worry about because you cant afford the attire.
The students are not new to the idea of giving back, as its ingrained in their honor society program. The students must complete 20 hours of community service, and 10 of those hours must be Spanish-related.
We want to make students aware that its not just about them, and we do that with these different drives, said club adviser Marlene Moussa. In previous years, the students have held drives to donate school supplies to inner-city schools, or a drive to collect winter coats and ties for Spanish-speaking students in New York City.
The Lakeland students said theyve always known there are other students their age who cant afford certain things, and they agreed it was nice to be able to do something about it.
A lot of people have said to us that their older sisters have so many dresses sitting in the closets collecting dust, because it's something that you usually only wear once in your life and then you kind of just leave it there, because you dont know what to do with it, Riordan said. This is a great opportunity to give people the dress that youre not doing anything with.
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