By Eliana Rodriguez, March 7, 2023
Cal Poly Pomona’s Beta Kappa chapter of Chi Omega raised more than $100,000 for its national philanthropy, the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Philanthropy week, held Feb. 13-17, was filled with many fundraising events like profit shares at Canes and Yogurtland, t-shirt sales and call-a-thons, where organizations call as many people as possible in one hour to raise money. All money raised supports the non-profit organization that helps grant wishes to children diagnosed with chronic illnesses.
Chi Omega women’s fraternity established its alliance with Make-A-Wish in 2002. Since then, its members have shown a commitment to philanthropy, raising more than $33 million and volunteering 1.4 million hours.
“When Chi Omega first partnered with Make-A-Wish, Beta Kappa at CPP was the first chapter nationally to raise $10K to help grant a wish,” said Chapter President Morgan Burke.
The planning of Chi Omega’s philanthropy week began last September, as the chapter needed Panhellenic Council approval before booking the conference rooms at the BSC, outside spaces at the University Quad and the banquet venue.
“In our Make-A-Wish team, there are eight other members who I rely on,” said Nicole Hoyer, Make-A-Wish chair. “We are all collaborative in planning events, but we also hold each other accountable to make sure our week is successful. There is a lot of planning ahead, coordinating events and looking back at other events that have been successful to help us raise more money.”
Such extensive planning resulted in events like car painting, a wing eating contest, basketball trivia and the end of the week banquet. Chi Omega also held “Kicking it with Chi O” at the soccer field Friday. Organizations were paired up to play one another and played as competitors to win the mini soccer games.
Students were aware of Chi Omega’s presence throughout the week, as the chapter had two fundraising events each day in multiple places on campus, which included sharing information about the organization’s philanthropy at the University Quad.
The chapter determines the week’s success by the increased participation of the Greek community who participate in Chi Omega’s philanthropy.
Both fraternities and sororities competed against one another by raising money to earn points. Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity was the winner of Chi Omega’s philanthropy week, earning 75,529 points and raising more than $30,000.
Chi Omega held their annual Make-A-Wish Week banquet at Mountain Meadows golf course Feb. 17 at 6 p.m. While this event concludes the chapter’s philanthropy, it is highly anticipated each year as members, families and friends of Chi Omega come together to celebrate.
“Banquet is a highly anticipated event because it is a big thank you to everyone that made contributions throughout the week,” Hoyer said. “This year was also the first time in three years that a Make-A-Wish recipient was present to speak about how Make-A-Wish changed their life.”
Beta Kappa is the only chapter that donates to the foundation in the greater Los Angeles area.
“This experience was so rewarding,” said Savannah Schlottach, a member of Beta Kappa’s Make-A-Wish team. “It was a lot of work and late nights, but at the end of the week when you see how much we contributed to make 11 wishes happen, it was worth it, and it shows that we have a greater purpose in contributing to Make-A-Wish.”
The chapter raised $100,000 last year and broke their record this year by an increase of $10,000. Beta Kappa is looking forward to hosting their philanthropy week next year in hopes of raising more money to grant more wishes.
“For next year, I am hoping that everyone still comes out to participate as much as they can so we can continue reaching our goal,” Burke said.
Feature image courtesy of Tess Prata
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