NSU sorority gives back to the Arthritis Foundation
TNE Editor
/ Categories: Feature, Greek Life

NSU sorority gives back to the Arthritis Foundation

Published 11/28/17

Julie Ferguson

TNE Writer

NSU’s sorority Alpha Omicron Pi is preparing for their new event Pumpkin Pie with AOII event at NSU. For $5, attendees will receive unlimited pumpkin desserts, coffee and ciders made by the sisters of AOII. The unlimited pumpkin desserts, coffee and ciders are available for the students and faculty of NSU, but citizens of Tahlequah are invited to join as well.

Since 1967, Alpha Omicron Pi has enjoyed an important partnership with the Arthritis Foundation. Any money donated to the Arthritis Foundation supports arthritis research, Juvenile Arthritis Power Packs, Juvenile Arthritis Camps and conferences.

“AOII’s philanthropy means the world to me as I was born with the pediatric rheumatic disease, also known as juvenile arthritis,” said Abby Zimmerman, Tulsa freshman. “I was diagnosed at age 8, and my grandmother was born with juvenile arthritis as well. When I heard what AOII’s philanthropy was, I was sold on AOII. Growing up with juvenile arthritis I have had a lot more problems that normal children did.”

This year is the first year Alpha Omicron Pi will be putting on Pumpkin Pi with AOII.

“I was looking at successful events that other AOII chapters have held and there was a lot of common themes of pie events,” said Kayse Stidham, AOII philanthropy chairman. “I tried to think of something that would be successful but still unique. Almost everyone loves pumpkin spice and fall, so I figured we might as well use that. I just wanted to have a fun, cute and meaningful event.”

AOII has many personal connections to arthritis that keep them passionate to raise money for the Arthritis Foundation.

“My little has severe rheumatoid arthritis and I see how her pain affects her on a daily basis, how expensive her treatments are and how it affects every aspect of her life, down to what she can and cannot eat,” said Stidham. “Arthritis is a disease that is too often overlooked because it is considered an old people’s disease. There are many people on NSU’s campus alone that have arthritis. Raising money for arthritis research can help make it a bigger deal, and the more awareness we spread, the more people will understand the effects of this disease and want to donate to a cause that is dedicated to finding a cure.”

Other events that AOII participates in to raise money for the Arthritis Foundations are Bone Bash, Jingle Bell Run, Pie a Pi, Mr. Chi Theta and Strike Out Arthritis.

“Our philanthropy helps me give back to those in the same position my family once was and can help find a cure,” said Zimmerman. “It can change a child and their families lives. Medical bills, damaging medication, hospital visits and paralyzation are all repercussion to arthritis. Knowing the effects makes me have a stronger passion to help make a change and donate my time and effort to the cause.”

The event is fun for those involved. The women of AOII provide the ingredients needed for the pumpkin desserts, coffee and ciders and work in shifts throughout the event.

“Being able to give back to the Arthritis Foundation means a lot to me,” said Grace Hand, AOII president. “Being able to put on events like Pumpkin Pie with AOII and Pie a Pi are simple ways that we can give back and help to make a difference in someone else's life where it is already hard enough.”

Tickets for Pumpkin Pie with AOII are $5 a piece. They can be purchased from any AOII member or from the AOII table set up in the UC at lunchtime.  Pumpkin Pie with AOII is from 6-9 p.m., Nov. 29 in the Baptist Collegiate Ministry building on the Tahlequah campus.

For more information, email Stidham at stidhamk@nsuok.edu.


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