School formals are a big deal for students and are often the party to see out their final year in high school before tackling a whole new world as young adults.
Formals can be a wonderful time, but it can also be an awfully expensive time for families who may be doing it tough. New dresses, jewellery, shoes, hair, make-up, accessories, and a special car to drive in or it could be a new suit, shoes, and many other items to make the kids feel good on their special night.
This sometimes means that some students do not attend their end of year celebration due to not being able to get a new dress or suit because they simply cannot afford it.
This is where the wonderful Tammy Robinson steps in from Formally Ever After. For three years Tammy has been helping dress students from around the City of Logan and further afield for their special occasion, and all for no cost.
Tammy started originally collecting for another lady in another city and when her very first collection of eight dresses came, she did not want the dresses to leave Logan as they could dress locals who needed them.
That was where it started, and Tammy has been collecting and dressing students from 2019 from her home in Logan. It became clear that with the current economic times families were struggling to afford the costs of living let a lone a formal and everything associated with one.
Tammy said I saw a huge need for a service like this to be based in the Logan area as our future adults really need the extra support and love that this program can bring.
“Even if I could dress one child, that is one child that got to their formal that wasn’t going to go.”
All dresses, suits, shoes, and accessories are donated to Formally Ever After from people around south-east Queensland and Tammy will repair and clean them ready for students to come in and try on. Tammy takes time with each person to find the right dress or suit that fits them and all with a smile and a laugh that helps make the students feel more comfortable.
Every student that comes in has an idea of what they want, however sometimes what they want and what they look great in can be different. Tammy helps them by giving them several outfits to try on and often they leave in something different to what they thought they would. But everyone leaves with a smile.
The students get to keep the outfits they choose, and it costs the family nothing. Thanks to all the hard work by Tammy and the contributions of clothing from people, this program is going from strength to strength.
Tammy has a real passion for helping the community and when talking to her the passion flows like river over a waterfall and she is really an inspiring person.
“I know how hard it can be to fit in and so when you here all the other kids talking about their new dresses it can be pretty disheartening.
“When they come here, they get to try on dresses and get the full works and they go away, and the smiles are priceless; I’ll do it forever.
“I do love it; I do really love it and it makes me happy and makes them happy and makes their family happy, so they don’t have to struggle.
“Sometimes I have had kids come from private schools as well because they are struggling just as much because their families might have put their kinds in a private school because they needed a certain program for them.
“All students should get to go to their formals and not worry about how they’ll get a dress or a suit for this special event in their life.
“They should all go with confidence, pride, amazing smiles and have the best night.
“Your formal is closure for all your hard work,” said Tammy.
If you are wanting to talk to Tammy about your upcoming formal or want to donate something special, you can reach her on facebook – www.facebook.com/FormallyEverAfter or 0401 508 759.