Giving the Glam

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Maristela Rapo  I  Founder    

Helping financially disadvantaged teens enjoy a high-school prom experience.

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I was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. I grew up in a very impoverished community and with that came many challenges. There were many times where I couldn’t participate in certain activities because my family simply couldn’t afford it. It was very difficult to feel left out in these situations, as many of my friends were lucky enough to be able to have them.

When I was 17 years old, I saved enough money to leave Brazil and move to Europe where my passion for fashion was officially born! I am the former proprietor of two high-end boutiques, Wolford and Giuseppe Zanotti. After so many years in the fashion industry, I finally found a way to use my fashion expertise to make a difference and give back to the community!

While prom season doesn’t come around until May, the Giving the Glam process starts in the first week of January. First, the team helps the candidate choose their tuxedo or dress. The next step is the fitting, and by the middle of March we are done with the fittings and picking of the outfits. From then on until April, our team goes accessory hunting, making sure that each candidate is dressed their very best. As May and June come around, the big days finally arrive and the entire Giving the Glam squad comes together for makeup, hair, nails and to put the last touches on each outfit! Prom is an unforgettable milestone for these students, and Giving the Glam gives them the opportunity to attend and make life long memories.


Financial constraints put unnecessary burdens on kids and serve to alienate them from the rest of their student body at a time when they most need community at their stage of adolescent development. Giving the Glam attempts to fill this need by giving everyone the opportunity to enjoy their high school prom, regardless of their financial or physical condition . By developing their self-confidence, we prepare these kids for the next chapter in their lives.


Giving the Glam is able to help young financially struggling kids feel included in their high school communities. Far too often these kids are left out of many experiences due to no fault of their own and for them to finally experience this inclusion is an amazing thing to witness. Giving the Glam creates an experience that they will never forget

My past has given me the gift of giving.
— Maristela Rapo