Saturday, January 30, 2010

OWU Sig Eps Raise Funds for Haiti Relief

Students rally to help Haitians
With belly flops, tae kwon do, kids of all ages pitch in
FOR THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH
DELAWARE, Ohio -- The daily images and news out of Haiti are inspiring central Ohioans to jump in and get involved -- even if that means going face first.

Frank Weschler and his fraternity brothers in Ohio Wesleyan University's Sigma Phi Epsilon chapter are putting the finishing touches on a Feb. 6 fundraiser for victims of the Jan. 12 earthquake. It's called "Belly Flop for Haitian Relief."

"Believe it or not, there is a proper technique to this," said Weschler, 21, a junior theater major. "You want your whole body and face to remain parallel to the water throughout the air."

Weschler is a two-time belly-flopping-for-charitable-contributions champion at Loyola Academy, his Wilmette, Ill., high school. He pitched the idea to his fraternity brothers, and now they're preparing for a campuswide competition at the university's pool.

"I didn't say it doesn't hurt less to do it this way," Weschler said. "But it does make for a bigger splash and, besides, what we say is we're hurting a little so they can hurt less."

Easing that suffering has become a goal for many area students from grade school through college, with penny-collection drives and dress-down-pass sales leading the way.