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Sororities Come Together to Raise Money for People Impacted by COVID-19
Greek life organizations have a long history of incorporating philanthropic work into their missions. That certainly was the case this March, when 13 sororities of the Panhellenic Council at Syracuse University banded together to raise more than $5,700 for people in Central New York impacted by COVID-19.
Because students have been off campus since the coronavirus pandemic struck, the sororities created a virtual campaign, engaging in a friendly fundraising competition to raise money for the Central New York COVID-19 Community Support Fund. The fund helps support nonprofit organizations working with communities that are disproportionately impacted by the economic consequences of the pandemic.
From mid-April to early May, the sorority chapters promoted a donation link on their various social media pages in a race to see who could raise the most money. There was no trophy at the end of this competition—just the knowledge and satisfaction that they were assisting those in need. The real winners, of course, were the people helped by their efforts.
“This was the first time we got to do anything like this specifically, where all 13 chapters worked to raise money for the same organization with a social media competition, all while being remote,” explains Nicole Jaskot ’21, director of philanthropic events for the University’s Panhellenic Council. “We knew we would need to team up to make the biggest impact on our Syracuse community. It was fun to try out something new and work with the challenges of being remote, and the project’s success made our efforts worth it!”
Many local organizations are using the funds to address needs associated with the pandemic, including food, personal hygiene items, personal protective equipment, transportation and assistance transitioning operations to a virtual environment.
“I knew we would be able to raise a good amount,” says Jaskot. “I know the strength of our council and how passionate everyone is when it comes to supporting different causes. Now that times are tough, I’m glad that this energy did not fade away.”
The sororities that participated were Delta Phi Epsilon, Kappa Kappa Gamma, Alpha Phi, Delta Gamma, Sigma Delta Tau, Phi Sigma Sigma, Alpha Xi Delta, Alpha Gamma Delta, Delta Delta Delta, Kappa Alpha Theta, Alpha Chi Omega, Gamma Phi Beta and Alpha Epsilon Phi.
The COVID-19 Community Support Fund is a collaborative effort of the Central New York Community Foundation, United Way of Central New York, Allyn Foundation, The Dorothy and Marshall M. Reisman Foundation, Health Foundation for Western & Central New York, the City of Syracuse and Onondaga County.