Soroptimist International of Clovis giving back this prom season

Soroptimist International of Clovis is accepting gently used dresses and gowns up until March 23 to distribute to local teenage girls for prom. (Pixabay)

As high schools nationwide prepare for prom season, which runs from April through June, a need for prom dresses arises for teenage girls unable to afford them.

Soroptimist International of Clovis, a volunteer women’s organization for business professionals who work to improve the lives of females, has introduced a project that seeks donations of gently used gowns or fancy dresses and tailor and dry-clean services in order to give girls – in Clovis Unified schools – an opportunity to attend their high school prom.

“This project is for girls who have succeeded in graduating but cannot afford to go to the prom, to buy their own dress, so we are hoping that we have dresses that they would like,” said Sharon Smith, fundraising chairperson of Soroptimist International of Clovis. “We want everybody to feel equal and there are certain economical problems right now that people can’t afford extra things like prom dresses, and yet they deserve to got to the prom like anybody else.”

After hosting a fundraiser to help students in need obtain a cap and gown for graduation, Smith realized that there was also a demand to help deserving girls obtain a dress for their high school prom: “If they succeeded in graduating, why shouldn’t they attend the prom if it is just a matter of a dress?,” she asked.

The Clovis community has already come together and donated 90 dresses but the organization is still looking to collect more in order to comply with the demand and personal style of each student

“We are just looking for more if we can,” Smith added. “You know, everybody has their own style and that hopefully everybody that attends will find something they like.”

The organization will host “The Enchanted Gala,” a luncheon reception on March 24 at Clovis Veterans Memorial District where students will pick out their dress.

The event is invitation only. Clovis Unified is working with Soroptimist International to invite students to RSVP in order to participate.

The organization is taking donations of dresses and gowns through March 23. Dresses can be dropped off at A Book Barn, located at 640 Clovis Ave. in Old Town Clovis.

For questions, contact Smith at 916-295-4769, via email at or Peggy Dunklee at 559-297-9052,