Lawrenceville-based charity HomeFront and more than 200 other nonprofits have partnered with men’s apparel retailer Men’s Wearhouse to organize the second annual National Suit Drive. The goal of the drive, which will last through the month of September, is to boost the self-esteem of unemployed men looking to re-enter the workforce by outfitting them with presentable attire for job interviews.

Gently worn suits, dress shirts, sport coats, slacks, ties, belts, and shoes will be accepted at all 1,065 Men’s Wearhouse locations. Those donations will in turn be handed over to nonprofit organizations like HomeFront that will provide the clothing to those in need.

The drive will also seek to raise awareness of the impact professional attire can have during a job interview.

“We are very excited to work with Men’s Wearhouse on the National Suit Drive campaign,” HomeFront Executive Director Connie Mercer said in a statement. “Proper professional attire really makes a difference in our clients’ lives.”

Men’s Wearhouse Chairman and CEO George Zimmer echoed Mercer’s sentiments. “We implemented the National Suit Drive to assist us in our efforts to help less fortunate men by giving them a renewed sense of dignity and respect,” he said. “Given the economic climate, this year’s National Suit Drive is more important than ever.”

The suit drive grew from Men’s Wearhouse’s Merchandise Donation program when that program could no longer meet demand. Men’s Wearhouse collected more than 125,000 items during last year’s drive. This year Men’s Wearhouse will also add a new tie to each suit donated.

HomeFront is based at 1880 Princeton Avenue, Lawrenceville, and information is posted at its website: www.homefrontnj.org. Contact: Sybil Jones, 609-903-0376, sybil.jones1@gmail.com.

NRG Energy, headquartered in Carnegie Center, recently donated $100,000 to HomeFront’s Summer Camps.

This was the second year in a row that NRG endowed the camps. Last year NRG gave $150,000 to hire new staff and to continue operation of the seven-week program. “Without NRG’s help, the summer would have been pretty dismal for our children,” said Connie Mercer, executive director of HomeFront.

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