Greek groups give back to community for Philanthropy Day

Bowling Green Sigma Kappa sophomore Sarah Hunton and Paducah Sigma Kappa freshman Shelby Schaefer clean the facilities at the Potters Childrens Home and Family Ministries during Philanthropy Day for Greek Week.

Kristina Burton

In these last few weeks of the semester, things are busy and stressful for most students. It might seem like there’s no spare time to do anything besides schoolwork — much less something to benefit the community.

However, several WKU sorority and fraternity members did just that this past Saturday for a part of Greek Week known as Philanthropy Day.

Kristina Johnson, a Bowling Green sophomore and member of Phi Mu sorority, helped with folding and sorting clothes at Potter’s Children’s Home.

“Today’s been a lot more relaxed in comparison to the rest of the Greek Week activities,” Johnson said. “It feels good to just slow down and help other people out.”

Johnson also said she took a lot away from the experience.

“It’s shown me how important it is to help out,” Johnson said. “It helps you realize how good you have it.”

Megan French, a Bowling Green freshman and member of Omega Phi Alpha sorority, volunteered at the Warren County Humane Society.

“We were asked to walk the dogs and play with the cats,” French said. “I ended up walking the dogs in the field out front most of the time. Just letting them run around and get fresh air instead of being cooped up.”

French also said working with animals taught her to break out of her comfort zone every once in a while.

“I don’t have any pets, since we can’t have them in the dorms and my dad’s allergic,” French said. “I was kind of apprehensive because I didn’t have as much experience with animals as those who have pets. But I ended up really enjoying it and having a good time.”

Amber Harris, a Bowling Green sophomore and fellow member of Omega Phi Alpha, also volunteered at the Humane Society.

“I love going to the Humane Society,” Harris said. “I definitely know I’ll go back and visit to socialize the cats and walk the dogs more. It’s a good experience and they need the interaction.”

Harris also addressed the common misunderstandings of sorority and fraternity members.

“It’s more than just fun and games,” Harris said. “We all have philanthropy we’re particularly involved with and it takes a lot of work, time and effort. There’s lots of people working together to accomplish things and support each other, and that’s really important.”

French shared a similar view, and hopes that something like Philanthropy Day can help combat those sort of stereotypes.

“A lot of people generalize their opinion off of one person or one group’s actions,” French said. “This kind of day where all Greeks come together and focus on serving the community we’re blessed to live in is a way to show people that we’re more than those stereotypes.”

French also wanted to let people know that community service is really easy to do.

“People often don’t do community service because they think it will be too hard, too much work or too time-consuming,” French said. “It doesn’t have to be difficult, though. There are plenty of places nearby where you can just show up and they’ll put you to work and tell you what they need you to do. They can always use you, regardless.”

Harris also urged that there’s a variety of different ways that people can do service for others.

“You can go to places like the Humane Society, or a soup kitchen, or even just do donations,” Harris said. “Our sorority collects cans, pop tabs and box tops. We collect those so schools can get supplies or people can get food. And there’s many other opportunities to get involved and help people. All of it’s very important.”