Volunteers prepare special-needs kids for prom

A volunteer group of hair and makeup artists donated their talents to give students with special needs in Newark a night to remember. Manny Rolon

A volunteer group of hair and makeup artists donated their talents to give students with special needs in Newark a night to remember.

A volunteer group of hair and makeup artists donated their talents to give students with special needs in Newark a night to remember. (6/17/16)

NEWARK - A volunteer group of hair and makeup artists donated their talents to give students with special needs in Newark a night to remember.

Manny Rolon and Pat Maxwell, who formed the Heart Project, paired volunteers and students for prom night at John F. Kennedy High School.

Vice Principal Jill Summers Phillips says inclusion is an important theme at the school, and all students are invited to prom.

"Oftentimes, people forget about students with special needs," says Lekeshea Brooks-Wertz, a social worker. "Our kids have the same desires, feelings, aspirations as any other teenager or young adult."

From the volunteers to the donation of tuxedos and gowns the staff here at JFK made sure every student was given the royal treatment — every boy is crowned king and every girl crowned queen.

"I hope the kids will remember this night for a long time...a long time," Brooks-Wertz says.

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