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Cinderella Project helps Bruin prom fantasies become realities

Counselor Bethany Williams is involved in the Cinderella Project. Photo by Emily Bakey

Prom is one of the biggest events in a teenager’s life in high school. At times, it may seem overrated or overdone, yet, in the end, many wonderful and memorable moments are created.

It is a place where everyone should feel beautiful and handsome, but it can sometimes be quite a burden on the wallet, from the shoes to the dresses, tuxedos, and flowers. To help, the Cinderella Project provides students a way to achieve their dreams for the dance.

Counselor Bethany Williams describes the project in further detail.

“The Cinderella Project is a project that some of the community members have been doing, as far as I know, for about ten years,” she said. “They have collected donations from various people for prom dresses. They have thousands of dresses available for students. They have expanded it over the last couple of years to where they have connections and vouchers to get the boutonniere, corsages, tuxedos, and all that, and it is all free.”

The project’s motto is “Building self esteem while making prom dreams come true.”

Many Bruins believe that the Cinderella Project is a great idea.

“I heard that the project had a lot of dresses,” said Senior Marie-Claire Desplancke. “I saw a few of my friends get dresses that were amazing, that you couldn’t get at Macy’s or other big brand stores.”

“I had seen a video about it online,” said Sophomore Nicole Scaglione. “I heard about another place doing it, not our school. I think it is very helpful, and it is not much different than buying a dress from a store.”

Fellow Bruin and Junior AJ Derise had not heard of the project before.

“I bought my suit last year just because I didn’t have a nice suit and I wanted one,” he said. “I would definitely wear the same one again, but, after hearing about the project, it seems super cool for people that don’t have dresses and suits. I might consider [utilizing the project] in the future, but, since I already have one, I might just use that one.”

Williams describes how the Cinderella Project has evolved.

“In the past, they wanted counselors to do a referral,” she said. “I would identify, maybe, a student in need, and, because they have so many resources, they are now saying … if someone wants to self-identify that they have a need or are wanting to do this, they can just show up and go to the place.”

With the arrival of Prom in less than three weeks, Williams expresses her hopes for the project.

“I would say a handful, less than five [students], in the past, [have gone and received resources],” she said. “I am hoping, now that there is no referral process and we’re just wanting all students to know about it, I’m hoping more students will refer to it. Students can also maybe even contact them to donate their dresses that they’re no longer wearing, as I know a lot of our students like to buy new. That is one way our students can help each other, by donating.”

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Cinderella Project helps Bruin prom fantasies become realities