Females in Finance Dress for Success

I have always been a big believer in investing in good quality suits.  The theory goes that if you buy quality it will last you through the lean times (and we’ve all been through those).  On Tuesday night  I attended a cocktail function organised by Sydney based Females in Finance (FIFI, fififund.org) and discovered another very good reason why it is worthwhile to make that investment, a non-for-profit organisation called Dress for Success.

Dress for Success (dressforsuccess.org) was  founded in New York City in 1997 to provide support to disadvantaged women seeking a career and ultimately self sufficiency.  The program provides each woman with a suit, styling along with some basic skills to get them started.  Diana Ryall, Director of Fund Raising from the Sydney based Dress for Success affiliate spoke to the group of 80 female professsionals from the finance industry about how the local program helps women.  “When women come to us they have often been through some very difficult times.  Many of them walk into our offices hunched over and downcast.  However, when they try on their new suits they look in the mirror and feel transformed.”

But it doesn’t end there, Dress for Success follows up on each woman’s progress and offers workshops in skills such as cv writing and interview techniques.

The night was a huge success, Females in Finance not only raised $15,000 for the program they also collected a very large number of suits, designer handbags, shoes and cosmetics.  It was wonderful to see so many women from the industry coming out to support the cause.  The raffle which included a number of exciting prizes donated by FIFI members was the highlight of the evening.  While it was an all female affair, the boys managed to push in with a number of the winning raffle prizes going to men who had purchased tickets before the event.    There are no doubt some lucky wives and partners on the receiving end of hair salons vouchers and the like – so ultimately everyone’s a winner.

Our congratulations go out to the FIFI committee on organising such a fabulous event.   Finally, we noted a number of major designers were included in the haul which would boost any woman’s confidence.  It just goes to show that quality does lead to sustainability as good suits can be recycled and benefit not just your career but someone elses.


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