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Need a (free) prom or grad dress? Sudbury Women's Centre can help

If you're cleaning out your closet, organization accepts donations of formal dresses and other clothing
Sudbury Women's Centre executive director Giulia Carpenter shows off some of the formal dress donations the women's centre has received. Those dresses are being offered free of charge for those in need. (Heidi Ulrichsen/

Whether it's graduation or prom, special occasions for abound for young people this time of year. But those special occasions can be expensive, with formal wear sometimes costing hundreds of dollars.

This year, Sudbury Women's Centre is stepping in to help girls find the prom or grad dress of their dreams, and at the right price, too — free.

The social service agency invites those looking for a formal dress to make an appointment to try on dresses — about 50 have already been donated. They come in all sizes, and some even have the tags still attached.

“Prom dresses are very expensive,” said Sudbury Women's Centre executive director Giulia Carpenter.

“Some people, they feel uncomfortable to go to an event because they can't afford a dress. Having the prom dresses here gives them an opportunity to be able to attend an event they felt they couldn't attend before.”

Sudbury Women's Centre also runs the My Sister's Closet program, which provides used women's and children's clothing. 

Clothing is free of charge for women's centre clients and $1 per item for those who aren't clients (although, as previously stated, there's no charge for the formal dresses).

If you've got a formal dress or other clothing you'd like to donate, Sudbury Women's Centre welcomes donations (gently worn or new, clean, and without stains, rips or holes).

The organization also accepts small kitchen items, unused hygiene products, blankets, sheets and books, ect. You're asked not to leave donations outside of the women's centre when it is closed.

Sudbury Women's Centre is open 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, and 1-5 p.m. and 6-8:30 p.m. Wednesday.

If you'd like to make an appointment to try on dresses, phone the Sudbury Women's Centre at 705-673-1916 or message staff on the centre's Facebook page.