With the Apple Cup on the horizon, Huskies and Cougars all over the state are getting ready for some healthy rivalry as UW and WSU go head-to-head in their yearly football game. Football isn’t everything these two schools have in common, though. This year, the Sigma Kappa Mu sorority from UW and the Sigma Kappa Alpha Gamma sorority from WSU raised over $70,000 for Alzheimer’s Association through the Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
The Sigma Kappa sorority is a national Walk team, and 2018 marks the 34th anniversary of the partnership between the Alzheimer’s Association and Sigma Kappa. All over the country, Sigma Kappa sororities worked together in their fundraising efforts. Since 1984, Sigma Kappas nationwide have donated over $5.1 million to the Alzheimer’s Association, and have raised over $1.4 million for the 2018 Walk to End Alzheimer’s
For WSU’s Sigma Kappa Alpha Gamma, fundraising started over the summer.. By the time school started in August, all of the sorority’s members were already registered for the local Walk in Spokane. “We had between 170-180 girls fundraising for the walk. It is a large task to motivate this many girls, but many feel very strongly for the cause and understand how important it is for our chapter,” said Emily McCallum, Sigma Kappa Gamma’s Vice President of Philanthropic Services. The chapter set weekly fundraising goals, and raised their goals every time they surpassed the previous one. Their fundraising efforts included a “Sigma Sweets” bake sale and a kickball tournament. To date, they’ve raised an impressive $39,856.26. “Overall, the motivation the girls have with a little friendly competition and the passion for the Association is why our fundraising goal kept increasing,” McCallum said.
UW’s Sigma Kappa Mu’s fundraising efforts also began before the school year, with a Run to End Alz 5K at the University of Washington.They also hosted a 2018 Ultra Violet Gala and auction, and a beach-themed “Sigma Kappatizers” event that was hosted for the whole Greek community. So far, they’ve raised an incredible $30,429 The Sigma Kappa Mu members walked in the Pacific Northwest Walk in Seattle. “Our walk was amazing this year and definitely a great experience for our new members. We had about 80 of our members attend,” said Zhane Serrano the chapter’s Vice President of Philanthropic Services. For her, the Walk has a personal connection. “Everyone has a different story to share,” she said, “For myself, I worked in an assisted living facility for three years caring for those with dementia and Alzheimer’s. Seeing the struggles they and their families had to go through was heartbreaking. After I left there to attend school, Sigma Kappa stuck out to me most because of their dedication to the Alzheimer’s Association as their philanthropy.”
The Sigma Kappas at UW and WSU also had a some help from a generous donor family that offered an anonymous $15,000 matching gift to both chapters as a way to boost their fundraising efforts. All donations in a given period were matched, up to $15,000. The match was met and split based on the first $15,000 the two teams raised; approximately $10,000 went to the UW team, and $5,000 to the WSU team.
Whether you are a Husky, a Cougar or just a person that wants to move us closer to realizing our vision of a world without Alzheimer’s, there is still time to donate to the Walk to End Alzheimer’s. Donations are being accepted through the end of the year. Show your team spirit for the Apple Cup by making a donation to the UW Sigma Kappa or WSU Sigma Kappa Teams, or by donating to your local Walk to End Alzheimer’s today!