As a nationally recognized sorority at the University of Arkansas we frequently hold events to support our philanthropy, Domestic Violence Awareness. Our most recent philanthropy event was Volley Against Domestic Violence to help our local shelter, Peace at Home.
Healthy Relationships Week, a national effort by Alpha Chi Omega, is seven days of raising awareness for domestic violence. The week inspires individuals to define what healthy love is through the “Love is…” campaign. The Delta Rho chapter of Alpha Chi Omega at the University of Arkansas celebrated Healthy Relationships Week by setting up “Love is…” booths by the Arkansas Student Union to promote the idea that all men and women are worthy of healthy relationships. Students could take pictures holding up a sign with the words “Love is…” and were able to write in their interpretation of what love means. Alpha Chi Omega celebrated the end of Healthy Relationships Week with Volley Against Domestic Violence in the HYPR Center on February 18th, 2017.
At first, sports and Domestic Violence Awareness seem almost unrelated; however, to Alpha Chi Omega, they have a lot in common. Volley Against Domestic Violence (VADV) is a volleyball tournament to raise awareness for our philanthropy, Domestic Violence Awareness. Started by sisters of the Delta Rho Chapter, the idea of VADV is to raise awareness for AXO’s philantrhopy, Domestic Violence Awareness, while having fun with the UofA Greek organizations. Julia Baird, Vice President of Philanthropy for Alpha Chi Omega, noted the cause also connects organizations, “This [Volley Against Domestic Violence] is a chance to interact with other Greek Chapters and host them for a fun time while raising money for something we care so much about. Having sisters coaching, reffing, and cheering on the teams really shows our sisters' genuine and fun attitudes for a good cause.”
Every organization competed fiercely for a donation from Alpha Chi to the winning organizations’ philanthropies After numerous exciting games, the women of Kappa Delta and men of Lambda Chi Alpha claimed their titles as champions of the 2017 Volley Against Domestic Violence. Alpha Chi generously donated to both organizations’ philanthropies. Overall, everyone walked away from the event sweaty, but happy to have bonded over an honorable cause and friendly competition.
While there’s friendly competition and excitement at this yearly event, Megan Mikkelson, Chapter President of Alpha Chi Omega, emphasizes that raising awareness for domestic violence is serious and essential to the chapter’s presence at the UofA. “This [Domestic Violence Awareness] is so meaningful because we believe that our generation constantly needs to be reminded of the love around them and needs to be informed of what’s healthy and what could hurt them.” Through Volley Against Domestic Violence, AXO’s main goal is to show that by uniting for a cause, together, we can make domestic violence less of a taboo subject and encourage young men and women on the University of Arkansas campus to seek help if they’re in a harmful relationship.
Volley Against Domestic Violence is an opportunity for Alpha Chi Omega to show the UofA that domestice violence is a serious epidemic in the United States.“I felt that Volley Against Domestic Violence was a perfect way to show how serious these issues are while incorporating fun. Domestic violence shouldn’t be taken lightly. 1 in 4 women will be affected in their lifetime,” Allison Frye, a member of Alpha Chi Omega, explained, “and there were well over four women in that gym, which means many people right here on campus could be impacted by domestic violence. We’re raising awareness for our community members.”
Alpha Chi Omega’s motto is “Together Let Us Seek The Heights”. Through events like VADV, Alpha Chi encourages everyone to seek the highest of heights in all their relationships. AXO supports healthy relationships for all men and women and advocates for Domestic Violence Awareness to give voices to those whose lives have been taken or risked due to relationship “Together Let Us Seek The Heights” means that no one is left behind in seeking the journey to happiness and health. Thinking back to what the “Love is…” campaign stands for most, the Delta Rho chapter of Alpha Chi Omega defines love as unity.
“At the end of the day, it’s not about what you have or even what you have accomplished. It is about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better. It’s about what you’ve given back.” –Denzel Washington