You probably think I'm going to write about clothes and your career. Well, kind of. It's actually a topic I could bang on about in a number of posts....how taking pride in what you wear shows pride in your work....how you can dress well without spending a lot of money.....dressing to suit your shape and job....dressing to get the job you want....
BUT, I'm going to write about syncronicity and supporting a charity, how important connections are, and how taking an opportunity can lead to other opportunities. The main point is to tell you about Dress for Success. The best way you can learn about this great organisation, is to watch this video.
This week I attended one of their business dinners, as a guest of Xplore for Success and was reminded again what an amazing organisation they are. They help women who are struggling or disadvantaged to achieve financial independence by helping them to find jobs. Their main level is support is dressing them for job interviews, through donated clothing, but other support includes helping with resume writing and teaching interview skills.
I first became aware of Dress for Success through Amanda Webb, an amazing woman and a friend, who runs her own business, my favourite part being her OneDay NewWays conference. Amanda supports Dress for Success as one of her chosen charities. Through Amanda I got interested, I attended volunteer training - to help dress their clients, and then did nothing. I couldn't even get my shit organised to donate clothes. What's wrong with me? Seriously, I live a great life and couldn't even volunteer for a few hours every couple of weeks. Life, work and babies got in the way.
With my guilt rising I came to the realisation that it's not like I do nothing. For the past 12 years, ever since I travelled back and forth to work to India over a 12 month period for work, I have sponsored a child with World Vision and supported a community fund with them. I am lucky to be in a position with my work to coordinate and lead support of community organisations and charities including RU OK? and Tour De Cure. I also support friends in their various charity endeavors but somehow if never feels quite enough.
But man, this organisation is persistent! It keeps coming back into my life. Through events I attend, other women I meet and connections I have made. These all keep bringing me back and reminding me that this organisation is something I need to be involved with, or at least support in some way.
Dress for Success is a perfect match for what I think is important. I believe dressing well helps boost your confidence and creating a good first impression goes a long way to securing a job. I also believe that having a job is important as it supports self esteem and financial independence. I
I have realised that at this time in my life, volunteering my time is just not going to work. I travel a lot and time with my two small boys and husband is precious. This needs to be my focus now, so I will support in other ways. I will attend their events, donate clothes and do things like spread the word with blog posts like this one.
When I was being interviewed for my current role, I learnt that part of the role in the first 6 months or so would be to bring together our employees into one default superannuation fund. I'm kinda passionate about super. About employees taking an active role in part of their remuneration that doesn't get thought about much. About making decisions about how their money is invested and how they protect themselves and their family through insurance. About considering whether enough money is going into their super account.
I also love clothes and fashion.
So this is why I think Dress for Success is such a fantastic organisation to support. Helping women feel great about themselves by having a great interview outfit - leads to creating a good first impression and in many cases a job, which leads to financial independence. I have to stop ignoring the "universe" which keeps telling me to find a way to support this charity.
This is my first step.