At least 800 girls have registered to get new or slightly used prom dresses though Girl Talk Foundation, four times the number who registered last year.

Foundation officials say this year’s total is the highest in the six-year history of the Prom Project.

“Clearly, the economy has impacted more families and their need to reach out to charity for help,” said Janine Davis, local radio personality and foundation director. “We are absolutely thrilled that we have the opportunity to serve four times the number of girls. We emphasize our plea to the public to donate gowns so every girl who attends walks away with something.”

Girls selected to receive gowns can pick them up at ImaginOn on Saturday, April 4, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. They will shop from a makeshift boutique designed by students from The Art Institute. They also will complete an etiquette class, get tips on hair and makeup and model in a mini-fashion show.

New this year: Gift bags donated from Saks 5th Avenue Off 5th, Dr. Miracles Hair Care & SoftSheen-Carson. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department will conduct a prom safety workshop.

Prom Project offers donated dresses and accessories to deserving girls who have pre-registered. The foundation is collecting donations through Friday, April 3, at ImaginOn.

Any remaining gowns or accessories will be donated to Charlotte’s Salvation Army Center of Hope women and children’s shelter. All donations are tax-deductible.

Over the past six years, Girl Talk Foundation has collected more than 2,000 gowns, serving nearly 1,000 young ladies, many enrolled in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. Girls interested in receiving a gown, should call the Girl Talk office at 704-335-5885 or ImaginOn at 704-973-2728.

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