Fashionably Frankford. is a unique clothing project located in Frankford High School in Philadelphia. PA. The program has three clothing closets operated by the students of the Business Academy of the high school. Students of all races and economic backgrounds come together to manage the clothing store. The project started in 1998, and the students took a vacant classroom and turned it into a men’s closet providing work clothes to men in transition. Students, both male and female, gave up their lunch and after school activities to help men select the perfect interview outfit. As the need for their services grew, so did Fashionably Frankford and it was decided to add services for women and children, too. After opening the closet in March of 1998, the students were honored by the Philadelphia 76’ers for their community service. The program is planning a grand “re-opening” in late September to introduce the new services and newly decorated closets to the general public.
The students worked together as a group to form a Board of Directors, recruit and train other students, learn about clothing inventory and basically, how to run their “business.” Although no money ever changed hands, the students learned valuable retail skills. They learned to work together as a team and how to talk out their differences instead of physically fighting to make their intentions known. In September of 2002, Fashionably Frankford is adding additional services. Along with the individual closets serving men, women and children, the students will have a waiting area for its clients and will offer “customer service” The retail skills and customer service skills being taught to the students will prepare them for future employment in the retail field.
Also in the 2002 – 2003 school year, Fashionably Frankford will start a Peer Counseling Center to address the issues of family violence and dating violence. Students will receive 45 hours of training before being able to counsel their peers. Domestic Violence Advocates will train and supervise student peer counselors. There will be a counseling room where students may meet with peer counselors in a safe and secure environment. Fashionably Frankford is a division of Street Clothes Project, Inc; a non-profit organization created to give assistance and support to men and women completing job-training programs or is referred by social service agencies Fashionably Frankford provides business and casual clothing, as well as, personal care items, free of charge for school, job training, interviews and employment. The organization is dedicated to helping those who are working towards making a positive life change and they are committed to being able to give back to the community.