June 22, 2018
Book, not Lunch, Raises $210K for Dress for Success Boston

April 13, 2017 — Dress for Success Boston, a local nonprofit that helps women break the cycle of poverty, in part, by providing professional attire to secure employment, decided to forego its annual fundraising luncheon and published a collection of success stories instead – raising $210,000 in the process.

Kimberly Todd, executive director of Dress for Success Boston, announcing results today, noted, "Instead of holding our annual Celebrating Self-Sufficiency Luncheon this year, we asked businesses and individuals to join us in celebrating the achievements of the women we have served for our first fifteen years.

"We published a collection of captivating stories about 15 of our clients to tell the world what a difference we have made in women's lives, and asked people to sponsor stories in this book titled The First Fifteen Years, to raise funds to support the mission of Dress for Success Boston."

She added, "The outpouring of support for this project was amazing."

Ninety percent of the funds raised will directly support the organization's work, she said.

The book is not for sale, but is being sent to individuals who make a donation of $200 or more to Dress for Success Boston.

The book features "full color, captivating stories" of clients and volunteers that tell the world about the difference Dress for Success Boston has made in women's lives. Bank of America was the principal sponsor of the book.

A key factor in publishing the book, in place of holding an annual event, was to keep costs low, in tandem with its overall approach to running the organization.

Dress for Success Boston reached its fifteenth year of service last July. Since its founding in 2001, the Boston-based nonprofit, which is an affiliate of a larger national organization, has served more than 11,000 women.

According to Dress for Success, poverty often affects women the most, and its effects on them and their families is often long-lasting. In addition to providing apparel and accessories, the organization's programs seek to provide clients "with a confidence that she carries forever and the knowledge that she can actively define her life, the direction she takes and what success means to her."

Dress for Success Boston, which notes that it is "part of a global movement for change, empowering women to obtain safer and better futures," works with its affiliates, referral agencies, volunteers, and companies to help its clients.

In addition to providing clothes, which are donated, Dress for Success Boston provides programs to help women with financial planning, prepare for job interviews, develop professional and leadership skills, and network with other women.

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