Dress for Success
Dress for Success has made a positive impact in the community since it was established in Hobart in 2019, helping empower disadvantaged women to achieve economic independence by providing professional attire and training through a number of workshops.
Operating in 150 locations across the world, Dress for Success received funding from the Tasmanian Community Fund through its Increasing Workforce Engagement targeted funding round in 2019 to set up shop in Hobart to assist women in their job-search and interview process.
Clients are provided with a styling appointment and walk away with a new wardrobe, a network of support, and career development tools for their job interview and to help them thrive in work.
‘It is about so much more than just the clothes,’ Dress for Success Hobart founder and manager Amanda French said.
‘Dress for Success empowers women by building their confidence and self-esteem.
‘Having a great outfit that you feel comfortable and confident in helps you put your best foot forward in an interview environment.’
Ms French said the Tasmanian Community Fund had played a significant role in helping them.
‘To have their support for a charity that had just started was such a boost for our confidence in knowing that what we were going to do was going to make a real difference in our community,’ she said.
Christine Widjaya was one of Dress for Success Hobart’s first clients.
Originally coming from Indonesia, Ms Widjaya said she struggled to find a support system and someone to provide her with advice before she found Dress for Success.
‘Amanda chatted to me and gave me some advice about how to get ready for the interview and she also gave me some questions that the interviewer would ask – it was really helpful,’ she said.
‘I left Dress for Success with a set of clothing for the interview, as well as a handbag and matching shoes, and I have never had such a beautiful set of clothing before.
‘When I went to the interview itself, I really felt the difference.
‘The interview went well and about a week later I got the good news that I was successful.’
Ms Widjaya is now working as a part-time project officer and has been able to provide a safe environment for her children to grow up in.
‘I feel like more people need to know about Dress for Success because there are many people who really need the services and help that Amanda and Dress for Success provide,’ she said.