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Jonesboro Center Presents Annual Fashion Show

Date: 03/18/2019

Lindsey might as well have been a supermodel standing in the middle of that banquet room surrounded by folks snapping photos and commencing to clap upon her arrival. She felt chic in patent black flats and a striped shirt sprinkled with embroidered flowers. Her hair was curled and fell toward her shoulders. Her eye shadow was meant to perfectly match, it seemed, the red carpet beneath her feet.

Lindsey’s confidence grew along with the growing applause from the crowd, which included elected officials, giving her courage to strike a pose – again and again – and display a dazzling smile.       

Lindsey was one of the many Jonesboro Human Development Center residents who hit the runway at the 2019 Be Your Own Beautiful Gala.    

“The gala empowers people with disabilities by allowing them to feel confident. That’s exactly what we want,” said Cynthia Wilson, the center’s volunteer coordinator. “We want to help our clients embrace their unique beauty, have another chance to feel good, and discover their own talents.”

Center residents modeling donated clothes took center stage at the gala, which Wilson created a few years ago. But it’s not just about fashion; the gala also offered clients a night on the town and a chance to connect with the Jonesboro community.

Guests enjoyed a full-course meal, music, door prizes, and a gallery comprised of artwork made by the clients.

“The residents who modeled were in stylish clothes which made them feel good. And that made staff, residents, and people from the general public smile,” Wilson said. “Everybody was just smiling, enjoying the gala.”  

The impact of the gala continues well after it’s over, according to Wilson.                

“Our residents constantly come with more ideas of things they’d like to do,” she said. “Those who are normally reserved come out of their shells in a positive way, and now more residents want to participate.”      

“The gala gives residents a great opportunity to break out of their shells,” Wilson said. “It also helps staff learn the residents’ likes, dislikes, strengths, and weaknesses.”         

To see photos from the gala go to https://www.instagram.com/arkansasdhs/.

Arkansas Department
of Human Services
(501) 682-1001

TTY: 1-800-285-1131 or dial 711 for Arkansas Relay Service

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