Newark nonprofit works with sewing instructor to create prom dress for student

A nonprofit in Newark is stitching together the full prom experience for one student who faced hardship.

News 12 Staff

May 18, 2023, 7:35 AM

Updated 393 days ago

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A nonprofit in Newark is stitching together the full prom experience for one student who faced hardship.
Sew With Kali is a shop that offers sewing classes for teens and young adults in Newark.
"They have an 11-week program with me," says instructor Sequoya Jones.
The students’ big project for this year is to work on a dress for Emma Ricksknights, an honor student from Malcolm X Shabazz High School. She is a second-year senior who skipped prom last season after having a tough year and no one to attend with.
"At first I didn't want to go to prom because I didn't see the significance,” she says.  
But this year, Ricksknights will be going in a custom-made dress.
"The type of energy that I wanted to display was a very luxurious regal extravagant, showcasing my dark skin,” she says.
Instructor Jones says Ricksknights will also receive everything else that is needed for a perfect prom night.
"We want to give them the car, the hair, the make-up. We know prom can be very expensive for our inner-city students,” she says.
Sew With Kali found Ricksknights through Bold Beginnings, a new nonprofit with a celebrity CEO, Naughty by Nature rapper Treach.
"A lot of people that didn't go to prom. I found out they were too embarrassed to say they couldn't get the right gear,” Treach says.
Tiffany Mack, the founder of Bold Beginnings, says Ricksknights’ story is inspiring.
"The fact that she decided to push through and fail the first time but then the second time come back as an honor student, to me that was beyond amazing. She is so deserving of this,” she says.
Ricksknights will graduate with a bright future and a prom experience to remember.  
"It is something that I don't want to miss and I'm realty grateful for this experience,” she says


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