We will be having a vision/dream board workshop for teen girls, ages 14 and up, and women, in the Inland Empire at the Wildomar Library on September 14 from 11-1pm. Class will be facilitated by Robbie Motter who hosted a vision board class during our 2018 prom dress giveaway event and the teens that attended the gala said it was their favorite part of the day! Space is limited to 25 people and refreshments will be available. This is an excellent way for teens to begin the new school year. If you’ve never done a vision board or it’s been awhile, this workshop is a must! They are a lot of fun and you get to take them home to display in your home or office throughout the year. Best of all the class is free. We are seeking magazine donations for this workshop. To rsvp and be put on the guest list, please email email@example.com or contact us here on this site .
We have recently changed our official non-profit organization’s name to The Dresses and Dreams Project. Formerly known as Operation Prom Girl, the annual dress program for teen girls with hardships and challenging circumstances, we agreed that a name change was just what we needed to convey to the public that we are so much more than just a dress.
How It Began
Founded in 2014, Our organization was born when a single mother and makeup artist for two decades had a vision to help a few girls get to prom who could not afford to do so. She was blessed a few years prior by someone who helped her own daughter attend prom and knew it was time to give back. Her experience as a makeup artist often led her to playing a “counseling” role when ladies, young or more mature, sat down in the makeup chair. They all had similar stories to tell. And many were hurt, scarred, and broken. Many stories had similarities. Only the faces had changed. As a trauma survivor herself, she knew how important it was to listen. And more importantly, for these women to heal.
Word quickly spread in the Inland Empire of her mission, and she used social media to solicit dress donations. Within a month, over 100 gowns were collected and within three months as early spring and prom time arrived, over 300 gowns were donated to this worthy cause. The first year, 18 girls were assisted and to date, over 1000 gowns have been given away at an annual event called Operation Prom Girl. These free events are truly more than just a gown giveaway. Attendees receive a full day’s itinerary including encouraging and powerful guest speakers, luncheon, resources and referrals, fashion show, hair and makeup workshop, vision boards, opportunity for college and career assistance, and on- site emergency assistance for those who may have emergent issues which would call for a counselor or trauma professional. In addition to their gown, they receive goody bags, shoes, gift certificates for services, jewelry and accessories, and raffle prizes. But it doesn’t stop there. Assistance is also provided to military women/balls, and special needs programs. In 2019 we were honored to provide dresses to a Tim Tebow ” Night To Shine” Prom for special needs teens in Temecula, CA.
A Year-Round Teen Girl and Women’s Collaborative
The name change opens a door for this 100% volunteer-run organization whose programs are free to vulnerable teen girls and women. We felt we were an organization that was associated only with prom season. The founder, Dawn Schultz, states, “Operation Prom Girl will still be very much part of the program. It’s here to stay. We have 1500 dresses and an annual event. And the beauty of the gown is where a girl might get a glimpse of the beauty she may not be able to see in herself initially. But we never want to just leave a girl in a dress with a full face of makeup, and have her believe that this is all there is to life. We want her to come face to face with the mirror and that reflection staring back at her when she is bare, real, and vulnerable, and learn to love who she is and what she sees. Beauty behind the mask.” We want these girls to get to know and love who they are as precious children of God and to help them learn and grow through a fun and nurturing environment, laughter, self-care , learning what healthy relationships look like, and what they’re not, and providing opportunities for healing at a foundational level so they can sever the roots that may hinder or destroy their ability to be all they can be, make healthy decisions, and flourish in life with integrity. I know their stories because I’ve lived it. That girl was ME. And I want to be to our clients who I needed when I was trying to find my way.”
For this reason, The Dresses and Dreams Project will offer classes, activities, resources, and referrals year-round by collaborating with teens and women in our community that can benefit from the empowerment of healthy lifestyle, life skills, counseling services, mentorship, and more. Dawn concludes by saying , “It has always been part of the vision. The door is now opening for us to implement what we have always conveyed and stood for. And what was part of our mission and vision statement, our own dream. We have some incredible volunteers and others on board that are now collaborating for a cause. It’s really a beautiful thing.”
Please do that it’s possible to break vicious cycles of family dysfunction and traumas that lead to unhealthy behaviors that can manifest as addiction, unhealthy lifestyles, fill in the blank, the list goes on. And long-term, when the cycle is broken, these young women who will eventually bear children, can pass the goodness on to their own daughters and sons. We want to have a positive effect on individuals so we can affect future generations and the world, one soul at a time!
For more information on our program, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are in the Riverside County area and would like to volunteer with the Operation Prom Girl sisterhood, please fill out a volunteer form and like us in Facebook for streaming updates and information. Here is our February volunteer meeting flyer, monthly event planning meetings are mandatory if you will be working our 2019 “A Cinderella Story” dress giveaway event. We would love to meet you and share this exciting journey as Operation Prom Girl continues to grow!
For the first time, Operation Prom Girl has opened up an opportunity to participate in supporting our mission and our annual event by sponsorship. By forming a partnership with us, we all are winners! OPG is 100% volunteer-run and our annual dress event is always free of charge to high school girls with hardships and special circumstances . We expect Operation Prom Girl 2019~ A Cinderella Story~ to be our biggest event to date. We are blessed to be supported so that we can meet the needs of the event. It is so much more than a dress, it’s an experience….
There are several different ways to sponsor. We currently accept PayPal at http://www.paypal.me/operationpromgirlOPG, or check. We have provided details on the snapshot below.
Operation Prom Girl 2019 will be held on April 13, 2019 at Lakeside High School in the Inland Valley Empire of Riverside County. Any high school girl who has some type of hardship or special circumstance can qualify to attend our big event by filling out the form we will have available at this website when registration opens on February 1. This year we ask that our guests donate one or more pair of socks at the door to attend event. It’s a great way to encourage a pay it forward attitude and to be blessed by giving. Socks will be distributed to homeless through the new Socks4Souls Ministry.
This year’s event will feature a luncheon and dessert, amazing guest speakers, a fashion show, hair and makeup segment, prizes, community resources and guests, and of course a free prom gown and much more.
If you have a passion for our program’s mission and vision to help change the lives of young women in our communities and assist military and other women in need; if you want to help a girl get to prom and assist in the planning and execution of our Spring 2019 Cinderella-themed event, we have many areas of opportunity available to you. We are a sisterhood of volunteers and 1500 beautiful gowns. If you are committed to 2-3 hours per month and/or are a high school student in need of community service hours, come have coffee with Operation Prom Girl this November and get on board!
Our volunteer kickoff for 2018-19 is just around the corner. Our first volunteer meeting for 2018-19 season will take place on October 11 in the city of Wildomar, where Operation Prom Girl was founded.
OPG runs on 100% volunteerism and we need support! We have many exciting events as we move forward, as well as the founder’s vision for our program, which we would love to share with you .
If you can commit to just a few hours per month, we encourage you to complete our volunteer application on this site and come to our meetings which are held once per month.
All of our volunteers have special talents and gifts. Come see where you fit in! There are many opportunities to find your gifts and work out your purpose here at Operation Prom Girl where it’s “more than just a dress, it’s an experience…”
Operation Prom Girl SoCal, a free prom dress program founded in the Inland Valley Empire of Southern California had their annual event at the Elk’s Club in Wildomar on March 24.
The theme was The Great Gatsby and the itinerary for the high school girls in attendance hit the spot. Girls not only took a free formal gown (and in most cases, shoes) home, but were treated to a day program which included lunch, a dessert bar, vision/dream board workshops, photography, raffles, prizes, resources, referrals, and inspirational speakers.
Operation Prom Girl is more than just a dress- it’s an experience. The prom help is what draws the girls in , but unlike any other program, offers hope and empowerment through love and encouragement. The organization is also military friendly.
Operation Prom Girl SoCal also works with Operation Makeover, a glamour and photography service specifically geared towards female combat veterans and spouses of military personnel.
Please enjoy some of our event photographs!!
Jolie Brownell is a 17 year old high school graduate from Portland, Oregon who through her love of writing plans to change the world by empowering girls to love themselves, believe in themselves, and go after their dreams. Starting out as a guest blogger for All Women’s Talk and then moving on to write for the I AM THAT GIRL organization, Jolie has inspired thousands of girls with her messages and the sharing of how she found self-love.