ALLISON REITZ | STAFF REPORTER
Pi Beta Phi Fraternity for Women held its first “Hugs and Kisses with Pi Phi Misses” event to support literacy.
A multitude of pastries including cake balls, chocolate-covered strawberries, cookies and hot chocolate disappeared from Butler University’s Gamma chapter last Thursday, but it was all in the name of service.
“We honestly did not expect this many people,” said Abbey DiSano, vice president of philanthropy. “It is really neat to see the Butler community rally around this cause.”
Chapter President Maureen Knaus said Pi Beta Phi’s philanthropy is different than others.
“It has an effect on the day-to-day lives of people,” she said. “It also gives us something to work for, which, in our case, would be a more literate society.”
Around 14 percent of the U.S. adult population are unable to read or have trouble reading, according to a study conducted by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Institude of Literacy.
In addition, 21 percent of adults in the U.S. read below a fifth-grade level and 19 percent of high school graduates cannot read.
“Part of what makes our philanthropy so special is that we get to see the impact that we make on the children that we help.” Said Knaus.
Pi Beta Phi supports Read, Lead, Achieve, a foundation created to help promote literacy in the United States.
The Read, Lead, Achieve Foundation has donated over $1 million to literacy foundations as well as one million books, and now it is trying to impact over one million lives by providing help with reading, according to its website.
“It is neat to have such an impact on the community by simply raising awareness and money for something that really affects people’s lives,” Knaus said.
In the fall semester, Pi Beta Phi hosts Arrowspike, a volleyball tournament for the Butler community. The money raised at this event also goes to Read, Lead, Achieve.
“One major way to get involved with our philanthropy is to come support our events,” Knaus said. “If you are interested in the literacy aspect, you are always able to contact your local library and get in touch with leaders of their reading program.”
*All photos by Nora Navin