In January 2003, the Enchanted Closet® was formed as a community service project to outfit disadvantaged girls for their prom. The working philosophy was that no high school girl should miss this rite of passage because she could not afford a dress. It was a simple principle that resonated in the Atlanta community and sparked an outpouring of support. Enchanted Closet received donations of hundreds of formal dresses and other social and professional clothing during a three-month collection drive. The founders of Enchanted Closet realized that they were in a unique position to make a positive difference in the lives of young girls.
During the summer, Enchanted Closet volunteers began the process of formally organizing and secured 501(c)(3) status in the Fall of 2003.
We view the connection between clothing and self-esteem as an opportunity to empower young girls. To date, Enchanted Closet has given away nearly 6,000 formal dresses to girls for prom and other special occasions.
The Enchanted Closet is focused on aiding girls holistically and offers life-readiness workshops to girls ages 12-19 years old. These programs provide tools for enhancing the self awareness, self esteem, and self sufficiency of girls, many of whom are living in foster care, group homes, and primarily single parent families. Future expansions will include clothing offerings for job and college interviews. Click here for more information about the giveaway and workshop programs.
Enchanted Closet and its leadership have received the following awards and recognitions:
2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit Award; 2014 Thomas C. Wilson Youth Services Award, NAACP-DeKalb County Branch; Enchanted Closet Day in the State of Georgia, 1/16/14; Enchanted Closet Day in the City of Atlanta, 12/7/13; 2013 Top 10 Nonprofits for Volunteer Opportunities in Atlanta, 2013 Giving is Good Award, Black Celebrity Giving; 2012 Top-Rated Nonprofit Award; 2011 Salute to Women Award, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4 Federal Women’s Program; 2010 Holiday Hero Award, Atlanta Journal & Constitution and B98.5 Radio Station; 2010 Most Outstanding in Community Service Award and 2010 Lighthouse Award, Lambda Epsilon Omega Chapter-Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.; 2010 Best of the CFC Designation; 2009 Seal of Excellence from Local Independent Charities of America; 2009 Thomas Liederbach Award for Community Service, Atlanta Federal Executive Board; 2008 Georgia State University President’s Outstanding Community Partner Award; 2007 Featured Nationally by Turner Broadcasting System, Movie & a Makeover; 2006 Atlanta Falcons Community Quarterback Award
The mission of the Enchanted Closet is to physically, mentally, and emotionally outfit Metro Atlanta high school girls from low-income families through programs that prepare them for social and professional milestones.