Theta Phi Alpha creates hope for the homeless


Madison Graver

The “help for the homeless” fundraising table was set up in the student center, collecting money for various organizations that give money to those who need it most.

Madison Graver

As part of Theta Phi Alpha’s philanthropy, the group organized a week-long event called “Hope for the Homeless Week” that takes place Oct. 7-11 in order to raise money for various homeless organizations.

This is one of the larger philanthropy events that the sorority holds during the fall semester, and they are looking to raise as much money as they can for the homeless.

Shelby Starnes, the philanthropy chair for Theta Phi Alpha, looked to change up the week from how it was done in the past.

“This year I kind of put a different spin on it where every single day during the week we have a different area or focus group of homelessness that we wanted to raise awareness about,” Starnes said.

Each day of the week was dedicated to a different organization that deals with homelessness. Additionally, rather than combining all of the funds and splitting them evenly, each amount raise on a specific day would go directly to that day’s organization.

Monday was dedicated to Camp Friendship, Tuesday to The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, Wednesday to True Colors United, Thursday to Safe Haven and Friday to Ashland Salvation Army Kroc Center.

In addition to tabling in the student center during this specific week, Theta Phi Alpha has also set up a crowd change website where donations can be made online at any time.

The topic of homelessness is one that’s very close to the hearts of those in Theta Phi Alpha and the sorority’s president Rachel Westfall believes the topic of homelessness can resonate with anyone.

“Helping the homeless impacts nearly everyone,” she said. “Everyone in general has at least seen somebody on the street collecting money so it hits home for a lot of people and I don’t know anyone that has not been impacted in at least some way or form by homelessness.”

Starnes is in agreement that donating to the homeless goes beyond just donating money.

“These are people with stories and people with families and through some way or another they have found themselves in unfavorable circumstances,” she said. “I don’t think that we really understand what it means to be without a home. There are people everywhere that are affected by this or they know somebody who’s been affected by this.”

Although the sorority is only tabling until Oct. 11, Starnes ensures that their crowd change link will stay active for individuals to keep donating. The site can be found here.

“At the end of the day these are people,” Starnes said. “We may not know their stories, we may not even know their names but we should care about them and we should want to help them. Even if we could just change the world a little bit we’re happy with that.”