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Teens hope to make others’ prom dreams come true

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Posted: Thursday, April 4, 2013 12:00 am

GERONIMO — What if Cinderella didn’t have a fairy godmother?

She wouldn’t have been able to go to the ball and have her happily ever after.

At Navarro a couple of seniors are hoping to avoid that ending by stepping in as fairy godmothers.

Jaylin Gamboa and Tahlia Gill started a project at Navarro High School they named Cinderella’s Closet.

The seniors are collecting evening gowns for area girls to browse through when looking for a prom dress.

“We just want girls to bring in their dresses so that the younger, underclassmen or girls from around the area can come in and pick out a dress for free and wear it to prom,” said Gill. “Any girl, from any school can come out and look for a dress.”

Gamboa said she got the idea from Texas Lutheran University, which offers a similar program.

“I know TLU put on their Cinderella Project and I wanted to do one here, so we can give girls options of more dresses, if they happened to go over there and didn’t find anything,” she said. “I wanted to do this and I wanted a partner to help me, so I asked Tahlia.”

Knowing how expensive the outfits can be, the girls said they wanted to give every girl a chance to look like a princess.

“I know a lot of girls want to go to prom but dresses are really expensive and we thought we could help them out,” Gamboa said. “I know some girls can’t afford it and some that can are passing their dresses down to others who might not be able to afford one.”

So far the girls have collected almost two dozen dresses and are hoping to get more.

“We have about 17 dresses so far,” Gill said. “We have had some girls from San Marcos bring in dresses.”

“My mom works at a dentist office and she has been telling her patients and they have been bringing their dresses in for us,” Gamboa said. “Everyone who has found out wants to help.”

As the end of the year rolls forward, more expenses turn up, especially for seniors, said NHS Counselor Jeri Hudson.

“It is the time of year when you already have a million expenses. Maybe this will help with one thing parents don’t have to spend money on.”

Hudson applauds the efforts of Gill and Gamboa, who are looking out for their peers.

“I thought it was great,” she said. “I’ve done this before in San Marcos and it turned into a huge project.”

Cinderella’s closet will be open on Thursday, April 25 and Friday, April 26 from 5-7 p.m. at Navarro High School.

“Some people say, ‘well, they don’t get to go shopping.’ But really they do, they just don’t have to pay for it,” Hudson said.

Anybody wanting to donate can drop dresses off at the main office any time before that, Hudson said.

“People can also donate jewelry or other accessories, as well,” she said. “I have some jewelry I will be adding to their collection.”

While Gamboa and Gill will be walking the stage in June, they hope their tradition carries on.

“My little sister is a junior and I hope she helps keep this going,” Gamboa said.

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