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Kappa Phi Gamma Sisters Raise Hundreds for Cancer Research

By Lauren Whetzel-Siburkis

The sisters of Kappa Phi Gamma Sorority, Inc. at University of the Sciences hosted their third annual C.A.R.E. (Cancer Awareness: A Real Effort) Week on March 16-19—raising nearly $1,000 for cancer research. As part of a nationwide tradition that occurs at every chapter of Kappa Phi Gamma, C.A.R.E Week at USciences commemorated the sorority’s national philanthropy, cancer awareness. All proceeds collectively raised across the United States benefited the Bite Me Cancer Foundation.

kappa group photo“We thank everyone who came and supported us during our C.A.R.E. Week,” said Rebecca Vayalumkal PharmD’18, a sister of Kappa Phi Gamma. “Through the campus community’s cooperation, we will be making a significant difference in teens who have cancer.”

The Virginia-based nonprofit, Bite Me Cancer Foundation, was established in September 2010 by Nikki Ferraro after she was diagnosed with a rare form of thyroid cancer at the young age of 17. Within the two weeks following her diagnosis in April 2010, Ferraro led a Relay for Life team called “Bite Me Cancer” and experienced immediate success with the team's name. When Ferraro decided to create a foundation, she chose to continue the legacy of her team's name to raise awareness and research funds for thyroid cancer.

C.A.R.E. Week at USciences started off with a kick off rally on Monday, March 16. The sisters of Kappa Phi Gamma shared Ferraro’s story and discussed the purpose of C.A.R.E week with guests, as well as hosted games at six different stations. Participants had opportunities to win raffle tickets at each station, and prizes included gift cards to City Tap House, Olive Garden, Honest Toms and Royals. Guests also enjoyed a nacho bar provided by Qdoba. (The photo booth was a big hit at this event!)

A candlelight vigil united several members of sororities and fraternities across campus on March 17. Members of the audience also shared their personal stories of how cancer has affected them and their families.

“We shared what our philanthropy is with the rest of the audience and why it is so near and dear to our hearts,” said Vayalumkal. “After we informed everyone about cancer awareness, we had a moment of silence to honor all those people that either had cancer or are currently battling it.”

Members of other sororities and fraternities also joined Kappa Phi Gamma in making cards for children battling cancer during a service event on March 18. Participants were able to use their creativity to make cards that will hopefully put smiles on the faces of children with cancer.

C.A.R.E Week wrapped up on March 19 with a Big/Little Competition, featuring duos from different Greek organizations at USciences. Members put together lists of questions to ask both the big and little duos representing their respective sororities or fraternities. Depending on how many of their answers matched up, participants would get points. The first-place winners received two $25 gift cards to MadMex restaurant. In addition to proceeds raised throughout the week from selling buttons across campus, the sorority also hosted fundraising opportunities with Insomnia cookies and Copabanana.

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