Woman credits Louisville's 'Dress for Success' for saving her li - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Woman credits Louisville's 'Dress for Success' for saving her life

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- By the age of 20, Monica Lun had already been repeatedly raped -- and was hooked on drugs. It wasn't long before she landed in jail. It's what happened to her after she served her time that has made a difference for her and thousands of other women.

Monica's problems started when she was only 4 years old. 

"I was being molested by a neighbor, a friend's uncle -- she was being molested too. It was something I thought was normal."

As a teenager she was raped, and already headed down a destructive path. 

"That's where I started building a lot of aggression," Monica said. "Instead of talking to a counselor it started to eat me alive. About 7th grade I started smoking cigarettes and drinking.

"By the time I was 19 I had already done crack, angel dust, ecstasy, acid, 'shrooms -- every pill you can think of."

Monica says she helped her friends do drugs, too, with deadly results.

"My best friend is passed today, and I remember being the first person with her who helped shoot her up and she's gone today," Monica said. "So you have a lot of guilt about people not making it."

The highs of drugs soon led to more tragic lows. 

"I decided to start breaking into cars and houses to get whatever I could to supply my habit and that's when God realized there was no stopping me," Monica recalled. 

The next stop was jail. 

"I thank God for jail - jail saved my life," Monica said. 

Her stint in jail  marked a turning point. After more than a year behind bars, a corrections officer recommended Monica visit Dress for Successs Louisville. It fits women in need with professional clothing, transforming their appearance -- and so much more."

"Dress for Success saved my life in so many ways," Monica said. "When I say people would see the outside and it never matched the inside growing up, this is how I know I was meant to be with Dress for Success because they will build you from the inside out."

Betty Fox is the Executive Director for Dress for Succes Louisville.

"If it doesn't kill you, it makes you stronger," Fox said. "I think there's a song that says that. What we tell them is you can do it and that's part of the motivation of it; we know in our heat of hearts that every woman can make it if she's given the tools she needs to succeed."

"You could see I changed," Monica said. "I get to mentor kids with Youth for Christ today, and I would never have followed my passion if it wasn't for Dress for Success."

Monica still has the first two suits that helped transform her life, and led to the birth of another. 

Now raising five children, and sober for nearly two years, Monica's life turned into one of hope and gratitude.
"God has given me back everything, plus more," Monica said. "It's amazing."

So far, Dress For Success Louisville has helped about 17,000 local women get back on their feet. It's hosting a new event, Dining Out in Style, Thursday night. It's the organization's biggest fundraiser of the year. 

Click here for more information about the fundraiser and Dress for Success Louisville.

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