Kim feels very blessed. She grew up down the street from the projects in East San Antonio with love and support from her mother and grandmother and pure craziness outside their door. When Kim was 8 years old, the granddaughter of her grandmother's friend came to visit, wearing a college t shirt. Only then did Kim realize that college was a possibility for her. No one in her family had ever gone. It wasn't easy, but she stayed motivated, graduated, and even earned a master's degree. Her goal now is to be the angel to other young girls that the teen in the college t shirt was for her.
The Prom Dress Project, now ten years old and thriving, was conceived as a way to reach these girls and break down the barriers that kids erect against older folk. What young girl doesn't like trying on fabulous dresses? The project has put Kim in a position to talk to the girls about their lives and the future, and, of course, fashion. It's worth noting that Kim was 26 when she started her project, but she says, "I've moved on from there. I'm not where they are now." She has moved on. While holding down a fulltime job, she has gone from 75 dresses the first time she held her prom dress giveaway to 3,000 donated dresses, shoes and accessories this year. Dress drives are held each year in San Antonio, Austin, and Dallas, and this year she's launching a drive in Atlanta.
People are drawn to her and her project. When she went to buy racks for dresses at the Container Store, she explained her mission and left with donated racks and faithful supporters. Saks Fifth Avenue holds a fashion show for the girls each year. Local groceries supply cookies and snacks. Fashion designer, Betsey Johnson, donates clothes each year. Kim believes that because this project comes from the heart, things just show up when they're needed. Every time she's reached an impasse, an angel has shown up.
It's clear that she has become an angel to thousands of young girls. Some of them come back the next year to donate their dresses, volunteer with the dress drive, and get caught up in her enthusiasm and confidence.