Every Greek organization on campus makes a contribution to a national charity, but Tau Kappa Epsilon has made a special pledge this year. The Beta Lambda chapter at Auburn University has pledged $25,000 to their national philanthropy St. Jude by Jan. 1, 2018.
St. Jude holds a special place in every TKE’s heart President of the Beta Lambda chapter Mason Blevins said.
“Founder and TKE brother Danny Thomas wanted to create a hospital that did not charge the patients,” Blevins said. “Nobody gets a bill at St. Jude, and in our chapter’s opinion, that is incredible. Being able to offer a small bit of help to these families is an incredible opportunity, and we are thrilled as a chapter to be able to do it.”
The chapter meticulously chose the amount to pledge, according to Blevins.
“Last year was our first year as this current chapter,” he said. “We were 18 men – we were 12 men when we decided to pledge $25,000. We wanted to do something incredible. So we decided to pledge a little more than $2,000 a person.”
As a chapter, TKE has hosted several events from spring 2017 to now, said Tanner Passafiume, philanthropy chair. They’ve hosted their TKE Open, Ice Cream Gutter and a benefit night.
On Sept. 23 the Beta Lambda chapter participated in the St. Jude walk in Birmingham. In preparation for the walk, each member fundraised through an online campaign, posting to Facebook,
“The ability to post a link onto Facebook, Instagram or Twitter makes reaching more people with the story of St. Jude so much easier,” he said. “The online aspect of it allows people to have a central and secure place to donate their money to such a great cause.”
All 37 men of the Beta Lambda chapter participated in the St. Jude walk in Birmingham. TKE Vice President Jackson Shell said it was great for them to see how successful their fundraising was and to be recognized as the only TKE chapter at the event.
The Beta Lambda chapter was the second place team when it came down to fundraising for the walk. The chapter raised $10,830.
As for the pledge, the chapter has raised more than half of their goal. They currently have raised $13,475 and continue to fundraise.
“We are putting together a large event like our TKE Open and Ice Cream Gutter and plan to have benefit nights this semester,” Passafiume said. “In addition to those events, we are going to continue fundraising online.”