Project Prom

This long-standing tradition assures all local students have the opportunity to go to their prom affordably, with confidence and in style. Through the generosity of residents and participating retailers, Project Prom has made prom dreams come true. Whether local residents and retailers donate time, talent, attire or accessories, the combined effort enables young adults who participate in Project Prom not only to look their best, but feel their best on this special occasion.

Register for Project Prom 2024

What is Project Prom?

The Project Prom Gown Giveaway, open only to young adults who are eligible for free attire (see guest eligibility requirements below), occurs several days each spring.

During the Project Prom Gown Giveaway, each guest is assisted by a personal shopper to help navigate the selection of gowns and accessories. The pair works as a team to put together the ideal outfit.

While there is no guarantee that every guest will find their perfect prom outfit, every effort is made to ensure that all outfits are stylish and appropriate.

Checking out is easy because all items are free for eligible guests.

Where and when?

The Project Prom Shop
10 Duff Road
Penn Hills, PA 15235

Saturday, April 6, 2024
10:00 am - 3:00 pm

Monday, April 8, 2024
3:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Thursday, April 11, 2024
3:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Saturday, April 13, 2024
10:00 am - 3:00 pm

Guests must register in advance and select an available time slot.
Guests are asked to bring only one friend or family member into the Project Prom Shop with them.

Register for Project Prom 2024

Questions may be directed by email to the Event and Donations Team.

Who is eligible?

You are eligible to receive a free, new or gently used, prom gown of your choosing from the Project Prom Shop if

  • you receive a service through the Allegheny County Department of Human Services or
  • your household qualifies as low-income or you are eligible for free or reduced-price school lunch or
  • a member of your household is in military active duty or a veteran

What can you expect at the Project Prom Shop?

The Project Prom Shop is an inviting, brightly decorated and well-equipped boutique. Racks of new and gently used formal gowns in current styles are organized according to a full range of sizes. Shoes and jewelry are displayed as well.

A circular stage, with full-length mirrors, allows for optimal viewing and selection.

Watch the video below to learn more about how Project Prom works.

How can you support Project Prom?

If you'd like to volunteer, there are lots of ways you can help with Project Prom. Please visit our page on Volunteer Opportunities at DHS to learn more.

Each year we are amazed how the generosity of students, county residents and retailers allows us to offer a beautiful selection of new and gently-used-but-ready-to-wear formal gowns, shoes and accessories to our young guests. If you're interested in making an in-kind or monetary donation, please visit the Project Prom section of our page on Giving Opportunities at DHS.

Are you looking for a tuxedo?

Project Prom provides a voucher for a free tuxedo rental from Tuxedo Junction to students who receive a service through the Allegheny County Department of Human Services (DHS) or a DHS-contracted provider. Talk with your caseworker or service or supports coordinator who can submit a request in your name through the Event and Donations Team. Requests must be submitted at least two weeks prior to the student’s prom. Requests will not be accepted after Friday, May 17, 2024.

Project Prom History

The DHS Office of Equity and Engagement started Project Prom in 2003, recognizing that the prom is an expensive evening and that many young men and women might be denied the experience as a result.

The Project Prom Gown Giveaway offers a selection of free, new and gently used, currently styled gowns and accessories to qualifying young people. Since 2003, thousands of young adults have made their selections from innumerable donated items. The Project Prom Shop is equipped with dressing rooms and is staffed with volunteers serving as personal stylists for the Gown Giveaway held several days in early spring.

The success of Project Prom rests on the generosity of donors, both individuals and retail stores, who contribute clean, currently styled and undamaged formal wear and gift certificates for young women and men.

In 2017, DHS entered into a partnership with the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), combining their talents and efforts to serve even more young people in Allegheny County. That successful partnership continued until 2021, when NCJW’s focus shifted to advocacy and service programs and DHS assumed sole operating responsibility for Project Program. NCJW continues to support DHS in its role as a community partner.

Project Prom moved to a new location in Penn Hills in 2022, from which it will continue to create prom memories for young people in Allegheny County.