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All grads can don dresses

Kwalikum Secondary School 2014 Grads Jamie and Rebecca model two of the SOS Grad Wear dresses. The SOS recently received a donation of 60 brand new grad dresses.  - Photo submitted by the SOS
Kwalikum Secondary School 2014 Grads Jamie and Rebecca model two of the SOS Grad Wear dresses. The SOS recently received a donation of 60 brand new grad dresses.
— image credit: Photo submitted by the SOS

View the dresses on Facebook page (SOS Grad Wear 2014) and call 250-248-2093 ext. 232 for an appointment

First, there was an armful of teal dresses, some sleek and satiny; some with mega bling and a mountain of tulle. Next came a half-dozen mauve and purple numbers — again in a range of styles, and sizes (0-18 in that armload alone). As the treasure trove of 60 brand new, stunning grad dresses started to pour into the Society of Organized Services Child, Youth and Family Centre, staff of SOS, and Grad Wear coordinator Nikki Westra-Luney were quite literally awestruck.

“The dresses are absolutely amazing,” says Westra-Luney. “It’s a huge boost to the Grad Wear Program, not just because we now have a very large inventory of brand new grad dresses that teens can get for just five dollars, but also because someone cares enough about youth  to support our program in this very meaningful way.”

That “someone” is the owner of Maidas, a bridal store in Courtenay, who preferred to remain anonymous, but did say that she was delighted to donate the dresses to SOS, and also to a similar grad wear program in Courtenay.

“They were dresses that I had in stock, some of them samples that I was clearing out to make room for more inventory, and I thought of the Grad Wear programs,” she said, of the dresses, most of which still have the price tags attached, ranging from $100 to over $500.

The SOS Grad Wear program welcomes grade 12 grads who can not afford the expense of a grad outfit, to choose the dress of their dreams, or a suit or tux, plus shoes and accessories, for just five dollars. Dresses are new or gently used, tuxes and suits are gently used, and everything is theirs to keep.

SOS will also outfit dates of grads, which can make for a fun shopping experience at the Child, Youth and Family Centre.

“We run the program at CYFC, not the Thrift Shop, and the bookings are private, so grads can take the time to try on their outfit in a large, comfortable room, and bring a date, friend or their parent if they want. It’s such an important milestone, and SOS believes that every graduating student deserves to feel special on their big day,” adds Renate Sutherland, executive director of SOS.

Interested grads can book an appointment with Nikki Westra-Luney by calling 250-248-2093, ext. 232, and can check out just some of the dresses on Facebook at SOS Grad Wear 2014

— NEWS Staff/Submitted by SOS

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