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Volunteers needed to help Hunter women Dress For Success

It’s the global not-for-profit that seeks to empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the development tools to help women thrive in both work and life.

And now, with National Volunteer Week just around the corner (Monday 17-Sunday 23 May), the Newcastle branch of Dress For Success is looking for volunteers to support this worthy cause and help reboot its unique programs in a post COVID environment.

An often-overlooked barrier an unemployed woman faces when looking for a job is a lack of suitable clothing for the all-important job interview. Women in need locally may be experiencing poverty, unemployment, underemployment, and family violence.

Through its unique one-on-one styling program, Dress for Success provides clients with a set of high quality, pre-loved clothes. The clothes are work-ready and suitable for job interviews, starting a new job or any other life event occasions when a woman might need help with having the right outfit.

“We recognise the barriers women face returning to paid employment,” Dress For Success Newcastle Operations Manager Shari Bonnette said.

“Dress for Success has successfully helped women from a wide variety of backgrounds and situations into employment. With unprecedented high levels of unemployment for women in the Hunter Region, we aim to provide a styling service and a career support program to assist all women with returning to paid employment.”

Since commencing in 2019 Dress for Success Newcastle has styled more than 135 clients, recruited over 50 volunteers who gave more than 300 hours, and established working relationships with more than 30 local referral agencies.

Shari added that Dress For Success was ons the lookout for local women who were keen to ‘give something back’ by helping out the volunteer-run prganisation.

“We appreciate everyone has busy lives, but even sparing a small amount of your time can made a huge difference to someone needing that extra support to re-enter employment,” Shari said.

“If you are someone with a positive attitude, a helpful smile, and an interest in helping other women, we would love to hear from you.”

Volunteering includes providing stylist support to clients in the Dress For Success Broadmeadow showroom, supporting the styling program by sorting clothing donations, assisting with its Career Support Program, and fundraising events.

Head here for more information on Dress For Success Newcastle and email to find out how you can lend a hand.