Project to dress men in their best

Dress for work: Sititi Apoua, from Liverpool, volunteers her time to fit suits for marginalised and disavantaged men to wear during job interviews. Picture: Chris Lane.
Dress for work: Sititi Apoua, from Liverpool, volunteers her time to fit suits for marginalised and disavantaged men to wear during job interviews. Picture: Chris Lane.

Liverpool’s Sititi Apoua believes there is no job more rewarding than hers.

Ms Apoua volunteers at Metro Assist’s Dress for Work project which provides free, donated business attire to disadvantaged and marginalised men so they can attend job interviews.

The majority of clothes are near new and are donated by corporations, businesses, television stations and from members of the community.

Ms Apoua said she has been volunteering at Metro Assist for the past four years.

“It is a pleasure for me to do it and a real joy to see the clients at the end of the day happy and satisfied,” she said.

“We not only dress the guys for the job interview, but if they get the job we will give them five days worth of work attire.

“We also give suits to people coming out jail or going to courts, to some kids who need a suit for their formal or even a funeral.”

Ms Apoua said some of the men had never worn a suit before.

“When they wear the suit you can see a very big difference in them,” she said.

“A lot of the clothes are quite well known brands like Ralph Lauren and Hugo Boss, which surprises people.

Liverpool volunteer Sititi Apoua at the Metro Assist Dress for Work showroom in Bankstown. Picture: Chris Lane

Liverpool volunteer Sititi Apoua at the Metro Assist Dress for Work showroom in Bankstown. Picture: Chris Lane

“For some this is their first time wearing a suit and you can see tears in their eyes.

“Others come alive, you can see more action in the body movements and they stand up straight. You see their confidence coming back.

“And it is always a joy for us too, we go home happy.”

People can apply for the project online by filling out the form through their caseworkers.

Fittings generally take up to 30 minutes per individual person and can be done in groups.

“We are the only ones that do this so we get people come here from Newcastle, the Central Coast, all throughout Sydney and even people from the Wollongong area,” Ms Apoua said.

“We hope to expand in the future and we also work with local disability service providers, employment services and community groups.

“People have often heard of the women’s service called Dress for Success and we want to spread the word about our service for men.

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