Nonprofit promotes inner beauty in girls

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Lily Casolaro

Staff Writer

TIARAS is a nonprofit organization that teaches young girls the importance of internal beauty and self-worth with an emphasis on biblical principles.

Leah Livingston, a sophomore communication major from Miami and founder of TIARAS in Troy, said she really wanted to positively impact the community.

“TIARAS originated in Miami where I’m from,” Livingston said. “I really wanted to bring it here to Troy and make a difference in the lives of girls from all walks of life.”

TIARAS organized a dress drive from Feb. 3 to March 2 for members of the Troy community to donate new or gently used dresses.

Trojan Center Room 224 was then transformed into a boutique on April 10-11 that featured formal, semiformal and casual dresses.

Girls aged 12-18 from Pike County and the surrounding areas were invited to pick out and try on dresses to take home at no cost to them.

There were 617 dresses donated and 396 dresses taken home.

A free TIARAS 2015 ball will be held April 18 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Claudia Crosby Theater for teenage girls.

Attire for registered participants is semiformal/formal attire.

The event is centralized on the “possibilities awaiting teenage girls when they embrace purity, self-respect and self-worth,” according to the TIARAS event page.

Over 200 girls attended TIARAS last year, and the group aims to increase attendance this year.

Girls will walk in on a pink carpet and have a photo opportunity with escorts. Once inside the theater, the girls participate in worship and hear a message on 1 Corinthians 13 led by female leaders.

Mallory Jayjohn, a senior secondary math education major from Daphne, is serving as the speaker for TIARAS.

“I have always had a passion for motivating and instilling confidence in young women in a biblical way, and I am blessed to be chosen as this year’s TIARAS speaker,” Jayjohn said.

Amanda Lewis, a Troy graduate, is a volunteer with TIARAS and will be leading the crowning ceremony.

“We give these girls crowns and remind them that they are fearfully and wonderfully made,” Lewis said.  “We want them to know how much they are loved. We want to express that their worth is not in the media or boys and crown them as daughters of the King.”

To register for the TIARAS event, visit troychurch.tv/tiaras.

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