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Grad Town shopping experience helps graduates look their best on grad night

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Graduation is an exciting time in a young person’s life and it’s often the culmination of years of hard work.

However, not everyone can afford new clothing so graduates can feel and look their best on grad night.

This is where Trellis Society’s Grad Town steps in to help.

Saturday, at Trellis Renfrew, located at 731 13 Ave NE, graduates were invited to explore a wide selection of fine clothing, including dresses, suits, skirts, blazers, blouses, ties, pants, tees, purses, sunglasses, heels, sneakers, and more.

“So obviously, like with cost of living, everything is just so expensive. A dress is hundreds of dollars and that is a lot of money that a lot of us don't have in this in this time,” says Kadie Hughes a Trellis Society volunteer.

“Any kids in the community that have any barriers accessing formal wear, like suits or dresses, they can come to our event, pick that out for free. And then they have something really great that they feel confident and excited to wear in for their graduation.”

The clothing is either free or available by donation.

“Having something like this that removes that barrier so families can still enjoy the grad season and have fun finding an outfit,” says Hughes.

Keegan Dueck, a Forest Lawn High School student, was one of about 40 youth who stopped by Saturday and he agrees.

“Not everyone can get an outfit this easily,” Dueck said.

“I go to Forest Lawn High School, so that specific area is known to be kind of more on the lower end of like the classes and a lot of my friends would have actually really appreciated an opportunity like this.”

Dueck also appreciates the thought that went into ensuring this event was inclusive for everyone.

“There's just so much here you get to meet new people. You get to kind of explore the colors that suits you your own style, what you prefer and whether you like masculine clothes, androgynous or feminine, there's kind of like just something for all of that here.”

In addition to the clothing; Del Mar College was there to offer some hairstyle tips while Mac Cosmetics was there to help with makeup.

If someone does make a donation after finding their outfit; every dollar raised goes back to Trellis Society to support other teens, toddlers, families, and friends in need within the community.

Its services range from housing, family and child development, to clinical, employment and cultural supports.

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