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Three-day philanthropy helps provide home for veterans

Lauren Zimmerman and David Pearl-Schwartz compete in the Kappa Sigma “Kaptain America” talent show held at the SAC Lakeside Patio on Wednesday night. The event raised money for their philanthropy the Miami Fisher House. Giancarlo Falconi // Staff Photographer

Lauren Zimmerman and David Pearl-Schwartz compete in the Kappa Sigma “Kaptain America” talent show held at the SAC Lakeside Patio on Wednesday night. The event raised money for their philanthropy the Miami Fisher House. Giancarlo Falconi // Staff Photographer

For two days, three sororities tossed water balloons, hula-hooped and participated in a talent competition as part of Kappa Sigma Fraternity’s Kaptain’s Kup, a philanthropy event that benefits veterans and their families.

The fundraising effort benefits the Miami Fisher House, a place to stay for families of veterans and military service members receiving care at the Bruce W. Carter VA Medical Center.

This is the first time Kappa Sigma organized its philanthropy as a competition among sororities. About 300 members from the Delta Delta Delta, Alpha Delta Pi – the Kup winner – and Delta Phi Epsilon sororities participated in field-day events Tuesday on the Green.

Participants were not required to pay an entrance fee but were encouraged to buy dog tags and flags with proceeds benefiting the Fisher House. The fraternity has raised $2,190 of its $7,000 goal as of Wednesday night, according to Kappa Sigma’s gofundme.com site.

“The Fisher House acts as a home away from home for families near the hospital when one of our veteran heroes comes home and needs medical attention,” said Greg Collins, a member of Kappa Sigma.

Kappa Sigma also held a talent show titled Kaptain America’s Got Talent to support the Fisher House Wednesday.

According to junior member Harrison Clark, Kappa Sigma’s philanthropy hits home for many of the brothers who have family members in branches of the military.

The 88 fraternity brothers were assigned positions and specific time spans to set up and referee the different field-day events.

“It’s important to put on events like this around campus, not just because they are fun and bring together UM as a community, but for the larger issue, which is raising money for the countless sacrifices made by our servicemen and women and their families who put everything on the line for our freedom,” said Taylor McKillop, Kappa Sigma public relations chair.

Since it was re-chartered in 2013, the Epsilon Beta chapter of Kappa Sigma has been building its involvement.

“It was definitely more of a struggle last year to get involvement,” McKillop said. “But our dedication and campus presence throughout the past year has made us known, so the participation is definitely there.”

The returned fraternity appealed especially to Risk Manager Mathew Harris.

“I immediately knew that I fit in with the brothers when I went to my first rush event,” he said. “Even if I didn’t talk to them all, I knew that they were the type of guys that I wanted to spend the rest of my college career with.”

When Harris and newly-initiated sophomore Ryan Henseler discussed their choices about rushing the new fraternity, they were both drawn to the prospects of making a difference, fitting in and feeling like key members.

“Kappa Sigma makes it easy to be good friends with brothers and feel that you are helping to make the fraternity better; to build it up,” Henseler said.

To donate to Kappa Sigma’s philanthropy, visit gofundme.com/kappasigmamiami.

November 5, 2014


Brianna Hernandez

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