Indy nonprofit helping women impacted by pandemic

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Women who are without a job are turning to a nonprofit organization for help.

Dress for Success Indianapolis is providing virtual services for women to reach economic success.

Executive director Julie Petr told News 8 that women have disproportionately been affected by the pandemic. Petr added the hospitality industry has been hit hard and the vast majority of those jobs belong to women.

“We’ve talked to women who have been employed with organizations for over a decade and never thought they’d be in this position,” said Petr. “Now they’ve lost their jobs and they have to start fresh.”

The nonprofit has seen more than 1,000 of its clients through virtual classes including interviewing, communication and resume building.

Dress for Success continues to provide professional work attire, shoes, makeup and accessories, but each woman can receive it in an “empower-power kit” during curbside pickup or delivery.

The executive director said in a survey conducted 90% of their clients either lost their jobs or have seen a decrease in hours due to the pandemic.

“We’ve also talked to a great number of women who have managed to either keep their jobs or find a job, but paying at a rate that’s not a living wage or without the benefits that they need to really sustain economic independence and support the family.”

Dress for Success is not taking clothing donations at this time, but encourage the community to make a monetary donation to its COVID-19 relief fund.

For more information on the organization, click here.