Poised For Success empowers women through clothes

When you look good, you feel good. Poised For Success in Lombard wholeheartedly believes in that adage.

The nonprofit social service agency offers business appropriate attire for women through an agency referral program. Seen by appointment, shop volunteers help women who are looking for a hand up find just the right outfit and accessories that will give them the confidence boost they need to go out and find a job to become self-sufficient.

“At Poised For Success, our focus extends beyond clothing; we're dedicated to nurturing self-worth and confidence,” said Gail Foster, executive director.

With its new space at 55 W. 22nd St., Suite 112, in Lombard, Foster and volunteers help women choose from an assortment of pants, dresses, skirts, suits, blouses, shoes, purses, scarves and jewelry. All donated clothing items must be clean and ready to wear on the hangers before Poised For Success will accept them.

Poised For Success, a nonprofit social service agency in Lombard, takes donations of business attire, skirts, blouses, shoes, purses and jewelry. Courtesy of Poised For Success

Right now, only spring and summer items are being accepted, although winter coats, hats, gloves and scarves are received all year.

But the nonprofit goes beyond just the clothes to help women become financially independent. Volunteers offer referrals to other organizations for job skills training as well as potential job placement. No matter their situation, the goal of the store is to help women find their footing and gain self-empowerment.

Foster shared a recent client testimonial: “I enjoyed that feeling of confidence and power after I saw myself in these beautiful outfits. I felt superpowered and motivated to reach for the stars. Nothing seems hard anymore.”

Poised For Success is always looking for volunteers to work in the store. To fill out an application, or to find out how to make a donation, visit

Foster discusses the store and how you can help women succeed.

Q: What is Poised For Success?

A: At Poised For Success, our mission extends far beyond merely providing clothing. We’re driven by a deep passion for empowering women in need, guiding them toward success one outfit at a time.

When a woman steps into our space, she isn’t simply receiving garments; she’s embraced by a supportive community committed to her personal journey. From crafting the perfect interview ensemble to selecting confidence-boosting accessories, we ensure she’s fully equipped, at no cost, to seize every opportunity that comes her way.

But our support doesn’t end there. Once she secures a job, we welcome her back for additional clothing, celebrating her triumph as a milestone in her path toward self-sufficiency. Our space isn’t merely a collection of clothes; it’s a sanctuary overflowing with warmth, encouragement and positivity.

Every client is greeted with open arms, reminded of her inherent beauty, and inspired to pursue her dreams with newfound determination. At Poised For Success, we're not just changing wardrobes; we’re changing lives.

Q: How many people do you serve each year?

A: Since opening our doors in 1998, we have had the privilege of assisting thousands of women by way of a social service agency referral program.

Q: Where do the majority of your funds come from to support this program?

A: We are primarily funded by our fundraising, as well as private and corporate donations, and grants. We are also fortunate to have received support from the DuPage County Board.

Noel Hoekstra, a longtime volunteer for Poised For Success, with some of the many business suits available. Volunteers help clients pick out the right outfit for a job interview. Courtesy of Poised For Success

Q: What are some of the jobs volunteers help with?

A: Volunteers play a crucial role in our organization by assisting with sorting and accessing donations, helping clients choose the perfect outfits, and coordinating fundraising initiatives.

Q: How can people donate clothing to your organization? What do you accept?

A: It all starts by visiting our website, We ask donors to view our guidelines and then schedule an appointment under “Contact U” or sending an email to:

We accept clothing that is freshly cleaned and on hangers, interview appropriate, seasonal and current. We also accept shoes, coats, handbags and accessories.

Women are referred to Poised For Success in Lombard to help them find the perfect outfit to find a job. The store helps build confidence and self-empowerment for women looking for financial independence. Courtesy of Poised For Success

Q: How can readers help your organization?

A: Volunteer their time. Host a fundraising event or a clothing drive. We are always appreciative of monetary and in-kind donations.

Q: What else would you like readers to know?

A: We're honored that we are the only agency in the area offering this incredible and inclusive service. Our new home in Lombard is a source of great excitement for us. We're currently planning an open house and look forward to meeting you there soon!

Poised For Success

What: A nonprofit social service agency that offers business appropriate attire for women through an agency referral program

Where: 55 W. 22nd St., Suite 112

Details: Services and donation drop-offs are by appointment only. Visit for information.

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