Sarah Bisbal - Westfield Local Heroes 2020
Helping students dress with pride
With Love Formal Wear
Resilient. Empowered. Uplifting.
Sarah Bisbal was in Year 12 when her mum passed away and her aunt Joss Adele took her in.
Ten years later, Sarah is a public servant with a child of her own. But she has not forgotten her hour of need.
Sarah and her aunt have co-founded a charity that provides teenagers with free outfits for their Year 7 Graduation and Year 12 Formal.
Their charity is called With Love Formal Wear. It brings joy and recognition to people in foster or kinship care, but any vulnerable student is welcome to access her service.
"Our aim is to give young people a moment in time where they feel their best and get to be part of something big," Sarah says.
"It's not just about their Year 12 formal. It's about being included without having to feel guilty about asking their carer to help financially or having to face an inner struggle about how they will afford it themselves."
The young people come in during the school holidays and select their formal outfit, which is donated by members of the community.
They can also participate in a two-hour makeup workshop.
Coffee and cake are provided for the carers, who enjoy a chat while they are waiting.
Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. With Love Formal Wear will use its grant to cover storage costs.
For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here