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Career Wardrobe

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Economic Development, Human Service Organizations, Human Services, Job Training, Vocational Counseling

Mission: The Career Wardrobe is the nation’s largest community-based non-profit organization serving women transitioning into the workforce by providing professional attire and innovative educational programs. Since 1995, The Career Wardrobe has assisted nearly 70,000 women by inspiring the confidence necessary to achieve independence.    The Career Wardrobe’s Gateway to Success Seminars and Professional Women’s Network, provide educational and networking opportunities for women to help them retain employment and develop a successful career plan.

Results: Assisted over 75,000 women transition to work since 1995. Over 60% of women helped by The Career Wardrobe are successful finding employment. Career skills education includes resume review services, a Professional Women's Network for peer networking and monthly Gateway to Success seminar series on career skills.

Target demographics: Low-income women transitioning into the workforce in Philadelphia and southeastern Pennsylvania.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 7,500 in 2009

Geographic areas served: Southeastern Philadelphia

Programs: In the past 14 years, The Career Wardrobe has grown from a grassroots organization run solely by volunteers to the nation's largest, independent community-based organization dedicated to assisting women successfully transition to work by providing professional attire, networking opportunities and career skills training. Our unique services start with providing free professional clothing and image consultation to teach women how to make a positive first impression. But our mission is more than clothes - we help women arrive at a level of self-confidence that enables them to improve their lives and achieve independence. The increased self-esteem that comes from securing and maintaining employment not only helps individual women, but contributes to stable families, which, in turn, improves to the viability and safety of our communities. Current programs include: * Professional Dressing and Image Consultation: to provide interview, training or work attire for women transitioning to employment. * Gateway to Success Educational Programs: professional development seminars and Dress to Impress workshops. * Beauty Basics: beauty products and toiletry items to provide the "finishing touch" for a clients' new outfit. * Resume Review and Mock Interviews: one-on-one feedback and resume critique provided by volunteer human resources professionals so clients look great on paper, too! * Professional Women's Network: peer networking and mentoring program for alumni of The Career Wardrobe to help them maintain employment and continue to be motivated to advance in their new careers.

Community Stories

2 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters


Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been privileged to assist this organization for the past five years as both publicist and event chair. It's been extraordinary to see the organization's growth and its commitment to serving the women in its community. The Career Wardrobe is constantly thinking of new ways to expand its services, putting more tools in the hands of women so they can change their lives. So many women tell stories about how The Career Wardrobe gave them the push they needed to succeed. In fact, several former clients have actually become staff members and volunteers!



Rating: 5

I sorted through massive amounts of donations to find clean professional clothing in good repair to offer to women trying to get into the workforce. I was amazed at the amount and quality of the donations and glad to know that they would be helping someone, not just to cover their backs, but to give them confidence when they had their interviews and hopefully help them land, not just a job, but the job they need to support themselves and their families. The staff were amazing, helpful, friendly and very hard working