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Waitaki Girls’ High School pupils shall go to the ball, and they shall be woke.

August 8 is the new date set for the combined Waitaki Girls’ and Boys’ High School formal, which was postponed due to Covid-19.

Inspired by the Prime Minister’s “be kind” messaging, pupils from the Waitaki Girls’ Social Committee, Enviro Club group, and Health Committee organised a thrift shop of sorts last term, offering girls the chance to buy, sell or hire formal dresses and shoes, Waitaki Girls’ arts co-ordinator Sherilyn Hellier said.

The Enviro Club’s message to the girls was that by reusing or renting a dress and shoes they were reducing their carbon footprint. Greenhouse gas emissions from the fashion industry accounted for 10% of the total global emissions and nearly 20% of waste water, Mrs Hellier said.

There was also an awareness that some families might be struggling more this year with costs related to the formal, and the thrift shop was a way to alleviate some of these.

The shop had been popular with pupils, and the school still welcomed donations of dresses and shoes. There would be another opportunity for the girls to shop early next term and then anything left over would be kept for next year, Mrs Hellier said.