On what could be the biggest night of teenage girl’s life, there are some that may not have that special dress to make it all the more memorable. That’s why a former Richmond Hill Girl Scout is pitching in to make some prom dreams come true.
Elizabeth Crofts, co-leader of Girl Scout Troop 30370, won a Gold Award six years ago when she was a Girl Scout — it was for a dress donation program that put used prom dresses into the hands of girls in need.
“Six years ago, I had started collecting teen clothes in Pembroke, and then I went to a Family Connections meeting and it was brought to my attention that prom dresses were also needed,” said Crofts. “I thought to myself, ‘That is a fun idea.’ So that’s what I’ve been doing ever since.”
Today, the Making Memories Prom Dress Drive collects as many as 200 dresses from Bryan County each year. With the help of the United Way and Bryan County Family Connection, the gowns are distributed to local teens that otherwise might not have the beautiful dress they always dreamed of.
“If a girl needs a prom dress, she can talk to her (school) counselor and they’ll help her get set up with a dress,” Crofts said. “Currently, we keep all of the dresses at the teen center. If a counselor says they need a size 8, well grab a whole bunch of those and send them their way.”
On Saturday, Crofts spent two hours at the Richmond Hill Public Library waiting for people to stop by with their donations of gowns, shoes and even costume jewelry.
A junior at Armstrong Atlantic State University, she said she plans to continue holding the dress drive for as long as she lives in Richmond Hill.
“I’ve heard some fun stories about girls getting the dresses and about having the fun time that they might not have had if they hadn’t gotten the dress,” Crofts said. “A lot of girls don’t get the chance to play dress up very often, and I think it’s important for girls to feel pretty.”
Crofts said she collected 27 dresses at the Richmond Hill Public Library on Saturday. Those dresses will be dry cleaned and stored until prom season in May.
For information on how you can donate to the United Way and Family Connections, or how you can take part in next year’s dress drive, go to www.uwce.org.