Justina McCaffrey and Operation Prom National Network Join Forces to Outfit At-Risk Teens for This Year’s Prom
Justina McCaffrey, Canada’s most celebrated wedding dress designer, announced a partnership with OPNN to create a campaign aimed at raising awareness of the needs of at-risk and inner-city youth.
McCaffrey says many teens and their parents struggle to afford the experience of an important milestone in their lives, as prom outfits can cost many hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
As a result, at least one teen is going to look like a million dollars for their prom festivities this year. The initiative combines the giveaway of a custom-made Justina McCaffrey bridal gown or suit (valued at $20,000), with an optional financial donation to OPNN by entrants.
The contest launches on June 5, and Licensing Expo attendees will have the opportunity to access the drawing homepage via QR codes positioned in the Fashion Showroom Café and in Cronus Global’s Booth #E196.
Entry to win the one-of-a-kind gown or suit is free, and optional donations can be made directly to OPNN via a link on the contest homepage. The winner of the McCaffrey original gown or suit will be announced on July 5.
Operation Prom National Network was founded in 2005 by Noel D’Allacco who worked as an event planner and began collecting bridesmaid dresses from clients and donating them to students at the high school she once attended. The charity has grown to 17 locations nationwide and now serves as a resource for students, parents, and schools to find organizations and community groups that can provide free formal wear to teens in need.
OPNN is open to all and will not turn away any student from events or services regardless of race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation. To date, OPNN has helped thousands of students attend their prom at little or no cost.
“It makes me happy to see students leaving our donation sites with formal wear, shoes, and accessories in hand, and to know we’ve helped so many teens experience prom,” said D’Allacco. “With most formal events cancelled during the pandemic, our inventories are lower than in prior years, and that’s why this awareness campaign with Justina McCaffrey is so important. We certainly accept financial donations, but we are just as glad to receive physical donations too.”
In addition to providing prom wear and other accessories to low-income families, OPNN is also working to meet the needs of transgender students through educational workshops like “women’s fit tuxedos” to assist these students in finding a prom outfit. Funds from donations will be used to purchase more female-fitting tuxedos and additional plus-sized prom wear.
“OPNN is such a great charity, and it aligns organically with what I do every day, which is to bring joy to people as they celebrate life’s important milestones,” said McCaffrey. “We will have achieved our goal if even one more student is able to go to prom due to awareness from this campaign. I’m ecstatic that my work might provide that chance.”
In concert with OPNN’s Mission Statement, Justina McCaffrey serves all, independent of race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation. The winner of the drawing will be free to choose the style of formal wear that is suited to their definition of a perfect celebration day.