SERVICE FOR SIGHT: JOINING FORCES
Hey y’all! My name is Abby Reinholt and I currently serve at the Vice of President of Foundation for the Delta Iota chapter of Delta Gamma. Service is one thing I believe our chapter strives to be the best in. Our passion for service began when a member who was visually impaired, Ruth Billow, Eta-Akron, petitioned for our sisterhood to adopt “Aid to the Blind” as our official philanthropy. Ever since, Delta Gamma sisters have bonded over the need of a sister to continue to do good through service in our community.
Through Service for Sight, Joining Forces, the Golden Anchor Program, and community activities, the Foundation supports members through philanthropic goals and achievements. Service for Sight volunteer opportunities involves working with individuals who have visual impairments and learning about the importance of eye health. Joining Forces is an organization that works directly with visually impaired veterans through the Department of Defense and Veterans Administration to improve eye injury clinical care and life-changing benefits. Finally, the Gold Anchor Program involves working with the elderly to preserve eyesight as well as being active in eye health.
Members of our chapter have a strong present of philanthropic good across our Greek community. Each fall semester, Delta Iota hosts our fall philanthropy event, Low Country Boil. This is a huge dinner on the lawn our house where students across campus, locals in the community as well as family and friends enjoy great food and live music. This past Low Country Boil had more than 800 attendees and raised thousands for Service for Sight. The proceeds were divided up between our National philanthropy as well as two local organizations, the Guide Dog Foundation and a local, blind beep-baseball team called the Timberwolves. Our members are actively involved with both organizations. We work with the Timberwolves by helping out at practices as well as inviting them over for dinners at the house. The money we raise helped fund their trip to the Beep Baseball World Series. In the spring, we are hosting our second annual Anchor Dash which is a 5k/ Fun walk at the UGA Golf Course. This event benefits Service for Sight and Joining Forces, which helps visually impaired veterans.
The Guide Dog Foundation is usually the first thing a Delta Iota will mention about our philanthropy. Over 10 women are currently raising Guide Dogs, and our main goal is to socialize and teach basic obedience while the puppy is 10 weeks old to around 16 months old before they leave for their formal training. Each year, one sophomore raises a puppy in the house! This year we have the pleasure of having Gamma being raised in the house! Guide Dog raisers can’t do it on their own, so over 40 of our women are involved in the Guide Dog Foundation as campers. They volunteer based on their schedule and help out with the Guide Dogs across campus, while their raisers are unavailable. You can typically count on at least one guide dog being at every Delta Gamma event.
Each semester, our chapter has a week filled with service called “Do Good Week” named after Delta Gamma’s motto. This week is filled with volunteer opportunities that help spread awareness for our philanthropy, Service for Sight. We record books and proofread at Learning Ally, play bingo and host holiday parties at local nursing homes, volunteer at the animal shelter, build baked good baskets for local firemen and police officers, and write thank you cards for overseas military and veterans. These are just a few of the many ways we “do good” by volunteering in our community. Each semester, Delta Iota logs over 4,000 hours of community service dedicated to our philanthropy and the local community! Beyond Service for Sight, most of our members are involved with UGA Miracle, Relay for Life, UGA HEROs, or Camp Kesem, Degisinated Dawgs and some hold executive positions within these organizations..
As Delta Iota’s Vice President of Foundation, I am honored to serve in this position and call each one of the hard working individuals my sisters as they ‘do good’ in all aspects of their lives.
- Abby Reinholt