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Program helps teens turn into prom queens

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OKLAHOMA CITY-High school girls are starting to hit the stores looking for that perfect prom dress. However, not every teen has that opportunity.

On Saturday, girls who may not otherwise go to prom not only were able to pick out a dress but were pampered in the process.

Brittanie Anderson said, “Whenever I put it on, it made me feel prettier.”

It’s a feeling that many of the girls don’t usually get.

She said, “All your life, growing up, you want to experience that.”

Anderson is shopping for a dress to wear to her senior prom.

She said, “It makes me feel good inside that I can come and do something like this.”

It’s not the traditional way most girls pick out a prom dress; everything was donated from the dresses to the makeup.

Debra Forshee with the Youth Services for Oklahoma County said, “These girls, by and large, have never had the experience of going with mom prom dress shopping. I mean, that’s kind of a right of passage of a mom and of a teen.”

The program is in its fourth year and has a special purpose for its creator.

Abby Bailey said, “Make a connection with the girls. Make a connection inside and out. Make them feel special. Make them feel loved. Do more than drop a bag of clothes on somebody’s doorstep.”

The girls getting pampered are considered independent living clients of Oklahoma County Youth Services and do not have guardians or parents around them.

Forshee said, “When they come out of the dressing room in a gorgeous blue dress, no one’s there to go ‘Whoa, that’s gorgeous. You look wonderful.”

Bailey said, I’ve had girls come to me with tears in their eyes and say ‘no one has ever paid this much attention to me.”

Oklahoma County Youth Services has not forgotten about the guys.

This week, they plan to start shopping for high school boys in the program with the help of cash donations and gift cards from the public.