A local high school senior is looking to help young girls throughout the area look and feel beautiful with her own nonprofit organization.
Lauren Bright, a senior at The Brook Hill School, is looking to help teenage girls fight off labels often associated by attending middle school and high school by equipping them with confidence through her nonprofit organization, Lauren’s Kloset.
“I started Lauren’s Kloset in 2016, during my sophomore year in high school,” said Bright. “The organization is aimed to help deserving high school girls in East Texas attend their schools prom with self confidence and in style. Attending prom or any other formal event is often just a dream for many girls. I want to help as many young girls as I can to feel confident and beautiful.”
Bright said the initial idea behind Lauren’s Kloset came to her after she attended her first prom during her sophomore year after receiving compliments about her dress.
“After I attended my first prom my sophomore year, I posted a picture of me in the dress and I got a lot of messages from girls asking if they could buy the dress from me or if I could sell it to them,” said Bright. “One message I got really stood out from the others; it was from a girl who said she didn’t have the money for the dress right now, but asked if she could buy it and pay me back for it over time. I wasn’t selling that particular dress at the time, so I found another dress from my closet and sent it to her. I got a message back from her saying she never felt more beautiful or confident than she did in that dress and how it changed her opinion about herself, which made my heart so happy. After that, I discussed it with my mother and we figured there were more girls out there who could not afford a dress at the time of their prom, and so, we started Lauren’s Kloset.”
According to Bright, since the foundation of Lauren’s Kloset, she has provided dresses for between 20-25 girls, from whom she has received numerous compliments.
Bright said she believes teenage girls need to feel confident about themselves in every way, especially while surrounded by the pressures of attending middle school or high school.
“High school can be very difficult for a lot of girls, whether they are bullied or just attend school on a regular basis,” said Bright. “To allow some of these girls to get dressed up on the night of their prom and feel beautiful and confident, it can change their entire high school experience and stay with them for the rest of their lives.”
Through Lauren’s Kloset, Bright accepts a number of donated items, including dresses and shoes in any sizes, as well as accessories such as jewelry and purses used to complete the outfits.
“Every girl deserves to look and feel their best and it’s my goal to help make that possible,” said Bright. “I have a blog called Living Bright and I use it to share my message to girls about feeling confidentially beautiful from the inside out. Whatever you put into yourself is what you’ll get out of yourself.”
With her own high school graduation approaching quickly, Bright has big hopes for her nonprofit organization, saying she would like to expand into the Dallas area, where she spends a lot of her time.
“I definitely want to keep Lauren’s Kloset up and running while I’m in college,” said Bright. “I am hoping to expand it throughout Texas, maybe into the Dallas area because I’m there a lot.”
Through her experience with modeling and competing in pageants, Bright admitted there were several points where confidence proved to be the key factor.
“In modeling and in pageants, self-confidence is definitely an added benefit,” said Bright. “I feel that if you don’t have self-confidence in yourself, then you can’t go out and perform your best. Through modeling and pageantry, I know that my self-confidence has gone up tremendously; I used to be so shy and didn’t want anything to do with it, but since I started modeling and competing, I feel that I’ve been able to grow as a person.”
In her time away from her studies at Brook Hill, Bright is a model with the Kim Dawson Agency in Dallas. In April, Bright competed in her first pageant event and was crowned as the 2017 Miss Dallas Teen. She will compete at her next pageant, the Miss Texas Teen 2018 competition, Friday through Sunday, Nov. 24-26, at the Hilton Post Oak Hotel in Houston.
When asked about what she wanted her legacy to be through her non-profit organization, bright said she wants to be known for having the heart of a servant.
“The most important thing to me is just to help girls look and feel beautiful even if it is just for one night,” said Bright. “I feel that I have a servant’s heart and I try to dedicate myself to what I’m doing, so I want to be remembered for lifting up others and let these girls know that they are very beautiful.”
After her graduation from Brook Hill, Bright plans to attend either the University of Texas at Austin or Texas A&M University – College Station and study business and nutrition in hopes of working with teams to start building healthy habits, as well as their confidence levels, all the while helping Lauren’s Kloset to continue to flourish.
Bright is currently holding a dress drive with Lauren’s Kloset until Thursday, March 1, 2018, just in time for the local schools’ 2017-2018 prom events. Donations of dresses, shoes, jewelry, and purses can be made at 4605 Old Bullard Rd., in Tyler.
According to Bright’s website, a shopping day is planned for the organization on Saturday, March 22, where the selected girls can pick out their dresses, shoes, and accessories. Also at the event will be people assisting with makeup and hair.
To nominate a young girl to receive a dress through Lauren’s Kloset or to donate to the organization, email Bright at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about Lauren’s Kloset, visit www.laurenskloset.com.