The Cinderella Project Of Pasco County

The Cinderella Project of Pasco County is offering free prom dresses and accessories to students on a budget.

The organization has over 1,200 dresses to offer to any girl that isn’t able to purchase a dress of their own. The dresses come in both small and larger sizes.

“It just takes one. That one special girl to walk in and they don’t want to take the dress off,” said organizer Julie Rockwell. “It just takes one to come up and give you a hug at the end and tell you ‘thank you’.”

Along with dresses, there are also donated shoes, purses and jewelry for girls to browse through and match to their dress.

“I like giving back to the community,” said volunteer Laura Luter. “Seeing them have joy over finding the right dress for them, they know it immediately, and that’s the reward.”

The non-profit organization has been holding Cinderella boutiques around Pasco for the past 13 years.

Each boutique’s location is donated to the project for free.

“It’s important that they experience prom because it’s a chance at one night maybe out of the year that they get to really dress up and feel beautiful,” Rockwell said. “I would hate to see any girl be able to go because she couldn’t afford a dress or a pair of shoes or some jewelry.”

The last boutique is taking place this Saturday, March 12 in at 38022 River Road in Dade City from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

A second home at the Y

Carrollwood, FL- For some people, YMCA is a classic party song and dance, for many others, it’s a place called home.

Officially referred to as, “the Y” now, this nonprofit organization is still a place of comfort. Whether it be an after school program or a late night gym session after a long day at work, it’s a second home for some.

The Y defines themselves as a nonprofit organization like no other, with locations in 10,000 neighborhoods across the country.

In Carrollwood, the Bob Sierra Family YMCA underwent major renovations using money donated entirely by the public and parents of the children who spend their days there.

Through these generous donations, the Top Flight Gymnastics portion of the Y was built.

Inside these four big walls, children ages 2-17 spend time escaping the real world and its problems by entering a safe place with their friends.

Destiny Garcia is one of the many gymnasts at Top Flight. She uses her time there to escape from anything going on outside the gym.

“It means a lot to me because its very encouraging and it helps a lot of us get through many problems that we have,” Garcia said.

With their friends, these future gymnasts work hard. This place is more than a place to go when school lets out, it’s a second home.

“I’m here 24/7 from 3:30 to, I would have to 7 or 8:30, everyday, Monday through Friday including today, it’s a lot of work, it’s like either you commit or you don’t commit,” gymnast Emma Barton said.

The YMCA is committed to making sure kids like Emma will always have a place to call home.

To learn more about the Y, visit: www.ymca.net.