Growing up with a working mom made every Monday morning memorable. After a weekend of jeans and laundry and sneakers and vacuuming, my Mom would start her daily workweek ritual of choosing her business clothes, putting on makeup in front of her mirror, doing her hair (I remember exactly what blowing out her bangs entailed) and picking her heels and matching purse. I would sit at the door of her room, waiting to see if she chose the blue suit with a white blouse, or the paisley skirt with pantyhose and a cardigan, or the black pumps with the red cotton dress. My favourite top of course was the embezzled blouse with large rhinestones across the neckline. I was mesmerized. My mom had the most beautiful strawberry blonde hair, which she would brush and wear loose, or blow out in the timely fashion of the early nineties. I would wait for the moment she passed by, her perfume wafting over me, remembering that she would smell as nice as she looked.
It’s a known fact that women look and feel their best when someone is appreciating them. My mom would transform into a successful, professional businesswoman with a few nice clothes, some makeup and a pair of heels (or boots, my favourite). I imagined her commanding a boardroom of employees, successfully directing her business associates across the regions she managed for her role, always on the road and in command. Dressing for success and feeling good on the outside, helped her to feel good on the inside. People responded to her. She helped to support our family and provided for us to have everything we needed.
At Do the Daniel, we are 100% supporters of non-profit organizations like Dress for Success Toronto. They dedicate their efforts to helping women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, development tools and professional attire. They help women to feel good on the inside by helping them feel confident, ensuring they have the skills to enter and be successful in the workforce and by looking good on the outside. Like my Mom, they are able to make the most impactful impression, to bring professionalism and pride into establishing a career, and to support their families. To put one woman through Dress for Success’ program, all it takes is $300. Three hundred dollars that could literally change the direction one woman’s life can take.
On March 8th, the world will celebrate International Women’s Day. This is an opportunity to recognize and thank every woman in your life who has been a role model, and to selflessly help those women who haven’t yet, to reach their potential and become role models for others. Dress for Success Toronto has lots of ways that you can get involved. “Spread the girl power” by donating gently used clothing, by helping a woman in your community with the gift of success by hosting a girl’s night where everyone brings $10 to donate to Dress for Success, by posting pics of your role models and encouraging them to get involved, or by tagging @dressforsucesstoronto to spread the word of this amazing organization using #PressforProgress and #IWD2018. Every day is an opportunity to make a difference for women who strive for more and just need a hand and there are so many ways to help.
From February 19 to March 8, take the time and effort to highlight and contribute to Dress for Success in the lead up to International Women’s Day. It’s an opportunity to affect change in your community, to help those mothers, sisters and daughters to have the chance to command a boardroom or to build a business. I used to sneak into my mother’s closet to try on her heels (I mean, who hasn’t?) and I would feel special, I would feel important, I would feel grown-up. My Mom had a community who supported her – my Dad, her friends, her colleagues and my brother and I. That is all some women need to succeed – the support, the confidence, the opportunity.
Be a part of a greater community, be part of the solution. Go to Dress for Success Toronto and make a difference. It could be someone’s mom who needs you to make those Monday mornings a reality.
Btw, thanks Mom. You’re beautiful and I’m so proud of you. You helped inspire my work ethic with Dad and my desire to help those who need it most of all whenever I can.
For more behind the scenes of this and other amazing brands we are working with around the world, make sure to follow along with the #DoTheDaniel Instagram account. We would love to have you join on our adventures.
Don’t forget to sign up for the DoTheDaniel.com Newsletter
Mobile photos have been taken with my Huawei P10 Plus