Using their popularity, resources and large group numbers, fraternities and sororities have been raising awareness and funds for philanthropies for years. Each is associated with a national or local philanthropy in which they dedicate time to help those in need.
Pi Kappa Phi is a fraternity that supports a philanthropy they created called Ability Experience, formerly known as Push America, Andrew Koke, a sophomore marketing major from Plano and Pi Kappa Phi philanthropy chairman, said. The philanthropy was recently changed to the Ability Experience in Fall 2014, Koke said.
“We are the only philanthropy owned by a fraternity in the country. So apart from all the other Greek Life, we are the only ones that actually operate their own philanthropy,” Koke said. “So this gives us a lot more freedom to do things more internally.”
The Ability Experience is about helping others who are not as capable, Koke said. It does not limit them to helping just one cause.
“Our slogan is ‘help people with disabilities,’ so that gives us a free range to help people with things like Alzheimer’s, people with down syndrome, autism,” Koke said. “Last spring we did something with the new Burkhart Center and we also work with Raider Special Olympics.”
Delta Tau Delta supports the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation as well as the Lubbock Boys and Girls Club. They hold events to raise money for the Foundation, as well as donate time to spend with the children and the Boys and Girls Club, Cody Tanner, a sophomore advertising manager from El Paso and Delta Tau Delta secretary, said.
Delta Tau Delta holds many events each year, but their biggest is the Delt Dive, a volleyball tournament typically held during April, Tanner said.
“Once a year we have Delt Dive,” Tanner said. “A bunch of Greek Life or anyone who wants to put together a team can come out.”
The fraternity also spends time at the Boys and Girls Club every Tuesday, Tanner said. It is a way for them to spend time with the children and be mentors and advisers to them.
Kappa Kappa Gamma also hosts events to help raise money for their charities. The sorority supports a national charity, Reading is Fundamental, as well as a local one, Children’s Miracle Network.
There are two main events Kappa Kappa Gamma hosts each year, Lauren Parker, a freshman pre-nursing major from Amarillo and philanthropy chairperson, said. The two events help raise money for their philanthropies.
“We have Kappa Classic, which is a golf tournament. This past year we raised $31,000 for Children’s Miracle Network with just the one tournament,” Parker said. “The other event that we have is Kappa Krawfish, and that one is just a crawfish boil. We raise money off of wrist bands and whatnot, it’s kind of like a block party.”
Kappa Delta also supports two philanthropies, Prevent Child Abuse America and Girl Scouts, Julie Williams, a sophomore animal science major from Idalou said.
It’s awesome because we have a center in Lubbock called the CAC, Lubbock Children Advocacy Center, and that’s where pretty much all of our money goes toward.
“For girl scouts, what we do is we help them sell cookies once a year. They learn their business skills,” Williams said. “They learn how to count money and talk to people. Girl Scouts will come up to the lodge and we have fun with them, and there’s usually an educational portion to it.”
For Prevent Child Abuse America, Kappa Delta hosts a Shamrock event, which this semester will consist of a 48-hour seesaw-athon where they will find business sponsors and accept donations from people in Lubbock.
“80 percent of all the money that we raise at Shamrock will go to the CAC here in Lubbock. So 80 percent of our money that we raise will stay right here in Lubbock,” Williams said, “then 20 percent of it will go nationally to Prevent Child Abuse America.”
Other philanthropies that Greek life supports are the Muscular Dystrophy Association, American Red Cross, American Heart Association, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Breast Cancer Awareness Foundation, St. Jude’s and Ronald McDonald House, according to the Panhellenic and Intrafraternity Council websites associated with Tech.