Columbus truck

DFS Columbus goes mobile to expand reach

An innovative program delivers business attire and job skills training to those in need

Since Dress for Success Columbus opened in 2007, they’ve empowered some 20,000 women striving for economic independence. By offering interview tips, job-skills training and career mentoring, along with business attire and presentation consultations, DFS Columbus helps put women on a path to a meaningful career. Bank of America supports DFS through volunteerism and grants for programs that help women find, keep and advance in their jobs.

One service developed with this funding is the Mobile Career Center (MCC), a large trailer that allows DFS to meet women where they are in the community. A lack of public transportation options in Columbus can result in missed appointments — as many as 20% of women fail to show up for appointments, with women living outside the city accounting for two-thirds of the “no shows.” The MCC makes it possible for DFS to reach women in outlying areas who might otherwise be unable to obtain the resources they need. 

In 2020, DFS helped more than 1,000 women from 68 ZIP codes in central Ohio — 20% of them through the MCC. In 2021, the MCC served another 250 women in the community, and the organization plans to keep the truck on the road, empowering even more women to achieve their goals, no matter where they live.