Cal Poly Pomona's Greek Community Steps Up Holiday Spirit

Cal Poly Pomona's Greek Community Steps Up Holiday Spirit
Several members of Cal Poly Pomona's Greek community gathered this past fall to help students move into the dorms.
Youngsters at the Children's Center play in snow trucked in by members of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity last February.
Women from Zeta Tau Alpha visit with children at Door of Faith Orphanage in Northern Baja California on Dec. 9.

In the past year, Cal Poly Pomona's Greek community has been spreading its philanthropic wings, and this holiday season has been no exception.

A shelter for battered women and children, an orphanage in Mexico and local food pantries have all been recipients of Greek Broncos' goodwill.

“More than ever the Greek community at Cal Poly Pomona is unified and shares common philanthropic goals,” says Jame'l Hodges, coordinator of Greek Life & Education. “The chapters are very different, but they are also very similar.”

There are 24 fraternities and sororities that make up four Greek councils at Cal Poly Pomona. Throughout the year the chapters participate together in events like Move-In Day when they help students move into the dorms. Last spring, more than one hundred Greeks helped paint the Children's Center and collected food for local food pantries, Hodges says.

During Fall Greek Quarterly in October, the Greek community collected more than 200 items (school supplies, toys, hygiene products, books, etc.) for the Orange County Child Abuse Prevention Center, Hodges says.

Since November, several individual chapters have also been involved with a variety of charity work beyond the university community.

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. collected more than a dozen coats which will be distributed by the Inglewood Southside Christian Church.

“The church gives away clothing and food every Saturday. Since it's getting colder they needed warmer clothes,” says student Lena Wilson, who organized AKA's coat collection.

Women from Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. helped feed the homeless during a Salvation Army sponsored Thanksgiving dinner. They also ran a can food drive and donated Thanksgiving baskets to low-income families.

In that same vein, the women of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. Pi Rho Chapter spent a day in November at the San Bernardino American Legion Hall with other volunteer groups to host a Thanksgiving dinner. The Phi Rho women assisted with children's games and served food to low-income families, says La Tonya T. Nelson of SGR.

The chapter returned to the San Bernardino American Legion Hall on Dec. 9 to help with a similar holiday celebration.

WINGS, a shelter for battered women and their children, benefited from Cal Poly Pomona's Gamma Upsilon Chapter of Lambda Theta Alpha Latina Sorority, Inc. Women from that sorority sent turkeys, gifts baskets and clothes to the local shelter. They also gave food away at the Pomona Day Labor Center, says Ana “D” Ramirez of the Gamma Upsilon Chapter.

On Dec. 9, five members of the Theta Omega Chapter of Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority, Inc. traveled hundreds of miles to deliver more than 200 items to Door of Faith Orphanage in Northern Baja California, Mexico. The women spent the day playing with the children, made lunch for them and decorated for Christmas, says student Lisa Wright.

“The children at the orphanage don't really get a Christmas,” Wright says. “We took them seven boxes of books, a large box of can goods, toothbrushes and toys.”

ZTA's approximately 80 members each spent about $10 on items for the children.

“It's important for our sorority to get involved with community service on and off campus,” Wright says. “Normally we stay local. But, I think this was an awesome opportunity to branch out and learn about the hardships these children have endured and try to help them.”

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