Prom giveaway caters to all kids in the Philadelphia area

For years, The Wardrobe has hosted a prom giveaway for all genders.

TaRhonda Thomas Image
Thursday, April 27, 2023
Prom giveaway caters to all kids in the Philadelphia area
Prom giveaway caters to all kids in the Philadelphia area

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- It's the time of year when we see many girls' prom wishes come true as local organizations give away dresses. But one group's focus goes beyond the ball gowns to include everyone.

"We really hope the students are able to find something that makes them feel good and special no matter what it is," said Al Sharrock, program director of The Wardrobe, a nonprofit that provides people in need with clothing.

It has locations near the Northern Liberties section of Philadelphia and in Upper Darby.

For years, the organization has hosted a prom giveaway for all genders.

"We do prom attire for everyone," said Sharrock. "That includes trans and non-binary people. Students are going to be able to shop for one full prom outfit. That includes a dress or a suit or a combination of a dress and a suit. Whatever they want to do."

It's a choice that 11th grader Rukiya Hutchinson appreciates, describing herself as a "tomboy" who didn't envision going to prom in a sparkly dress.

"I just don't like to wear dresses," she said. "I'm not like other girls."

Individuality is at the center of the prom giveaway in which students made appointments. They will attend with either a teacher or parent.

Once a month, The Wardrobe hosts 'open wardrobe,' which is a free event to meet the needs of specific communities. This month, they're focused on helping kids find the perfect prom outfit.

"Fitting in with your peer group and being able to be involved with your peers, whether or not you can afford the clothing, to be able to do so is such a big deal," said Sharrock.

Every kid left the event with a prom outfit that suited them from head to toe.

While the big giveaway, which was staffed with volunteers, was only scheduled for one day, the wardrobe can still provide help to anyone needing prom attire. Those in need are asked to schedule an appointment via the nonprofit's website: (specify that the appointment is for prom attire).

The organization is also accepting donations for more prom attire, especially suits.

"It's a passion of our organization that we help every single person who needs help," said Sharrock.