Friday, May 04, 2007

Cincinnati Betas Paint Toliets for Charity

Fraternity drops toilets for good cause
BY KURT BACKSCHEIDER

PRICE HILL - Very soon psychedelic toilets will again grace lawns throughout the city in a fundraising effort for Literacy Center West.

For the past several years members of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity at University of Cincinnati have conducted a Psychedelic Toilet Sale benefiting the Price Hill literacy center, which provides GED preparation, job readiness and job placement services.

"Once again this year we are proud to brighten the faces of Cincinnati by performing this one-of-a-kind fundraiser," said James Balough, a UC freshman and fraternity member.

The fraternity brothers made 10 psychedelic-colored planters out of toilets, and on Sunday, May 27, will place the toilets in the yards of family and friends throughout the city.

"Each toilet will have a sign that explains the event, the charity and the sponsors," Balough said.

Fraternity members will remove the toilet for a suggested donation of $10, and will allow the homeowner to tell them who should be the next "lucky" recipient, he said.

The goal is to raise at least $2,500 for Literacy Center West and its community programs, he said.

Jason Hecker, executive director of the center, said they appreciate everything the fraternity does for them. In addition to this fundraiser, he said the members volunteer each week as tutors and mentors, and last year painted the center.

"They're great, they've really adopted us and volunteer their time," Hecker said.

"They do it so well and they do it without an expectation of anything in return."

He said the money the center receives from the fundraiser is unrestricted, allowing them to apply it to programs that most benefit the Price Hill community.

Balough said the fraternity has formed a special bond with the center over the years.
"We always want to do more for this incredible charity, which is why the Psychedelic Toilet Sale was created."