On March 29, the SigEp brothers of the University of Arkansas ,Arkansas Alpha, had the privilege to organize a community service event for our philanthropy team at the Washington County Animal Shelter in Fayetteville, AR. When Wesley Storrs first called the shelter to inquire about their hours, the desk clerk sounded somewhat enthused about what she thought to be only one more volunteer to spend a few hours there, until Wesley informed her that there was going to be a large group coming with me from the Sigma Phi Epsilon chapter from the University of Arkansas campus. At this, she became much more excited, and scrambled to gather all the information the members would need to get everyone signed up and on the itinerary to volunteer.
When we showed up, the look of both shock and relief was on the employee’s faces as they quickly began to pass out their volunteer paperwork and delegate what tasks we were to undertake. In all, there were 15 SigEps that came. We spent the afternoon walking and playing with dogs that had before been either abused or neglected in a large grass field that the shelter provided. When we were directed to their kennel with our leashes, the amount of barking shocked most of us. To these dogs, this would be the most attention they would get for a long time until they were either adopted, or euthanized.
Throughout the day, we took our turns walking and playing with dogs as we spent time with every one of them. As the hours passed, each time we went into the kennel to return and walk another dog, there would be less and less barking, the employees became less stressed as they were able to fulfill other duties that would have otherwise been neglected, and more and more SigEps would show up to the shelter. Not only were we enjoying ourselves, but the employees also enjoyed our good manners and we were having a blast.
As SigEps, we know that by joining Sigep, we would be dedicating ourselves to our virtues of Virtue, Diligence, and Brotherly Love, and that through these principles we will be able to become involved in philanthropy work more wholeheartedly than we would on our own. But little did we know beforehand that through this experience and several other experiences all the members of SigEp have had through philanthropy, the impact that our chapter can have not only on campus but our community as a whole. Under the direction of our Vice President of Philanthropy, Hayden Vernia, and his predecessor and current President, John Fowler, the members of Arkansas Alpha have been able to make aspirations to become philanthropic men a reality. After seeing the impacts we are starting to make an impact on our community in Fayetteville and makes us proud to claim ourselves as a SigEps and people in the community recognize the great organization we are a part of.
Written by : Wesley Storrs
Edit by: Teddy Cunningham, VP of Communications