This winter New York City student Rebecca Reich hosted the second annual “Empowerment Through Fashion” event. The event benefited the Greater Chinatown Community Association (GCCA) and allowed girls try on different looks and to participate in a fashion show with a panel of judges who provided career advice. As a young philanthropist, Reich offers some insight on how to get involved in your community to make a difference.
It is never too early to get involved
Reich’s parents have always been involved in philanthropy. From the age of five, Reich knew that she wanted to give back.
Always be on the lookout for new ideas
One day Reich looked into her closet and noticed that her closet was brimming with old clothes that she no longer wore. Instead of letting the clothes go to waste, she wanted to do something better with them.
Reich wanted to empower underprivileged girls in her community, which is why Reich is involved with Greater Chinatown Community Association (GCCA). Many of the girls that participated in the event have immigrant parents who do not have the means to take their daughters shopping. Reich believes that all girls should feel empowered and that her project will help girls “express themselves and overcome difficulties by bringing them closer through fashion.”
Never Stop Trying
Starting a philanthropic event sometimes has its difficulties and the first steps may seem intimidating, but Reich insists that “nothing is impossible” and to “keep jumping over the hurdles.” She also reminds us that in the current generation, a lot of things occupy our time and it is important to “go with the flow and not dwell on little things. Let them go.”
After reflecting upon the experience, Reich believes that “it is all worth it.” Reich remembers one memory of hosting the event particularly fondly. When the girls arrive for the first fitting for the event, they usually come alone or with a parent. Once, there was this one little girl who was looking through the racks of clothing and was having a hard time finding something that would fit her. Eventually, she found a beautiful dress with a sequined white star on it and when she put it on she had a wide smile on her face. Remembering that moment, Reich says, “this is what [philanthropy] is about.”
Contributor: Rebecca Zuo