As individuals with time, talents and treasures, Kappas first support our sisters; second, we participate in local service projects; and third, we serve the greater good.
Reading Is Fundamental (RIF), our official philanthropic partner, has been supported through the donation of thousands of books and volunteer hours to Boys and Girls Clubs, elementary schools and hospitals. Our chapter works with the students at Spring Garden Children's Center, two or three times a week.
In the past year, our chapter has collected books for Good Will, sold Kappa Kisses for the Rose McGill Foundation, held philanthropy dances with Phi Psi to raise money for the Boys and Girls Club, and participated and donated to Take Back the Night, the Alternative School Break Club, Relay for Life, and Literacy Day.
Our chapter also has supported the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation with financial gifts and Rose McGill magazine subscription sales to help fund scholarships, confidential aid, education and training, and support of our two museums.
Marina Petersen Celebration Day is an annual event held in remembrance for Class of 2010 student Marina Peterson, who tragically passed away in the summer of 2009. Marina was a loyal sister of Kappa Kappa Gamma and active in the Lafayette/Easton community. Each year, the enthusiasm and solidarity on March Field is extremely apparent as everyone participates in Delta Upsilon's dunk tank, Delta Kappa Epsilon's volleyball games, Pi Beta Phi’s Pie-a-Pi Phi, Alpha Phi’s face painting, Delta Gamma’s henna tattoos, and Alpha Gamma Delta’s backyard games, among various other activities. Phi Psi’s cook out, along with Tri-Delta’s bake sale, keeps attendees happily fed, while a live DJ from Phi Psi and a cappella groups keeps the crowds entertained and smiling. It is always a beautiful day to celebrate life in Marina’s favorite way – outdoors with family and friends. In the past, the event has been successful in raising more than $3,000 for an interim abroad scholarship in Marina’s name, which is open to the entire Lafayette student body. Marina continues to be a contributing member of the Lafayette community, who will never be forgotten by her Kappa sisters and friends.
A Note From Our Philanthropy Chair:
Philanthropy is an integral part of our chapter membership and experience. This year we celebrated the 11th consecutive Marina Day, honoring the life of a sister, Marina Petersen, who was tragically taken from us in 2010. Just this year, our Philanthropy program for Marina Day won the Signature Event among chapters under 145 members at Kappa’s biennial recognition. This event not only recognizes the efforts put into the event, but it is awarded to the best program in the country. Only two awards are given annually. Overall, the Zeta Beta chapter was also recognized of one of four chapters for their overall philanthropy programs among 140 chapters around the country.
While Covid-19 sent us all home after spring break, we continued to support our community in Easton. A Greek-wide fundraiser was established to support the Second Harvest Food Bank and Family Connection of Easton, where the philanthropy chairs of all the sororities and fraternities on campus came together for a virtual fundraiser, raising over $25,000. The Zeta Beta chapter also pursued their annual Marina day virtually and raised more than our goal of $5,000. Organizing these events at home, Kappa contributed through its online efforts over $15,000!
Our goals were to increase the overall knowledge of our philanthropy both in the chapter and around campus. Throughout the fall, we spent our days at Lafayette College’s Early Learning Center and Third Street Alliance, where we volunteered with children from the Easton community. At the College’s Early Learning Center, members engaged with teachers to make unique lesson plans for the preschoolers to teach them the basic fundamentals of reading. At Third Street Alliance, members were able to babysit and tutor children. Our last event of the Fall semester was the annual Kappa Holiday Sweater Philanthropy Dance, where one hundred and twenty dollars was raised for the national Philanthropy of Reading is Fundamental.
Our first philanthropic event of the new year is Kappa Kisses, a fundraiser carried out annually to support the Rose McGill Foundation. This year, we made extra efforts to ensure understanding of the foundation and why this specific event is so important to our chapter and sisters from afar. Thanks to the widespread enthusiasm and support, we raised approximately $352. Second, we continued our volunteering efforts at the Early Learning Center and Third Street Alliance.
Unfortunately, COVID-19 disrupted our on-campus philanthropic plans for the remainder of the Spring semester. Our chapter had hoped to host another annual event, Kappa Kappacinos, where money would be directly donated to the Kappa Foundation. We held our Marina Day virtually, and all the money made during our fundraising efforts were sent to the Marina Petersen Interim Abroad Scholarship. The philanthropy chairman gathered video recordings including Marina’s family, friends, and loved ones and created a CrowdChange where online donations were encouraged. The PR team created a video to go hand in hand with the fundraiser and with the help and support of Marina’s friends, family, and Zeta Beta sisters, we were able to surpass our goal of $5,000.
Zeta Beta is disappointed and saddened that we are no longer able to host these events in person, however, we realize that what is most important right now is the health and safety of those around us. We were able to be involved with and sponsor Pards Against Sexual Assault, Denim Day, and Criminal Justice and Reform Awareness Week through organizations at Lafayette College. While we are away from campus, we are in the process of developing a virtual fundraising program, with the hopes of raising money for the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation, Marina Day, and Reading is Fundamental. We have also taken on an initiative to bring food to Easton area hospital workers, to show our gratitude for those on the frontline. We also had an event for Reading is Fundamental. As we enter the 2020-2021 school year, we are eager to return to campus and continue to make a difference on Lafayette’s campus and within the Easton community by furthering our involvement and stressing the importance of philanthropy.