GSU Greek life engages with community through philanthropy events

Tandra Smith

To many organizations in Georgia Southern University’s Greek community, philanthropy is a huge deal. In fact, according to Georgia Southern’s Greek Life website, more than 20,000 hours of volunteer time and $80,000 dollars were raised through philanthropic events in 2012.

“Most Greek organizations stand for community service. Even though we are all different, we all stand for the same cause. It is very important to reach out to each other and make our community better,” Stanley Heard, President of the Pi Rho chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Incorporated, said.

One of the things Heard’s chapter stands for is service and he says that he takes it very seriously as president. His chapter has set up Service Saturdays, in which he and other members of his chapter go out for at least 2 Saturdays a month and volunteer in the community. Currently they are working with Butler Home Projects.

“With this project, we are working with children from all age groups to help keep them out of trouble and clean up the projects,” Heard said. “We are also looking to work with the local Food Bank.”

Phi Beta Sigma has also teamed together with Tau Kappa Epsilon to raise money for Flint, Michigan families. They have raised a total of $733.70, so far.

Not only fraternities participate in philanthropy. A multitude of sororities host their own events that range from taking donations to give to less fortunate families, to cleaning up the environment. Sigma Lambda Gamma is one such sorority.

“Most of the time, we tend to work on our own philanthropy events, but enlist our F.I.R.M. family for support,” Ariadne Lowe, President and Vice President of Entity Operations for Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority Incorporated, said.

F.I.R.M. Family stands for First Inter-Racially Mixed Family and consists of the men of Sigma Lambda Beta International Fraternity, Incorporated, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity and the ladies of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated.

Though the sorority hasn’t participated in any philanthropic events lately, they are planning a Women’s Health Week during the week of March 21, participating in the Statesboro Pink Power 5K Run and fundraising to donate money to the local Breast Cancer foundation.

Lowe said, “As Greeks, we need to understand that we are leaders of our community and we need to carry on the mission that each of our organizations were built on by serving as role models and bettering our communities.”

Photo courtesy of Madison Reynolds.