TCU sorority Sigma Kappa channels its energy into supporting the Alzheimer’s Association.
Each year the sorority participates in Fort Worth’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s. This event is held in more than 600 communities nationwide, and it is the world’s largest fundraiser for Alzheimer’s care, support and research.
The walk this year was held Oct. 31.
Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia. More than five million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease, and almost two-thirds of Americans with Alzheimer’s are women. It is the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S., according to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Maggie Slapshak, a senior social work major and the Sigma Kappa philanthropy chair, said when she joined Sigma Kappa she did not have a personal connection to Alzheimer’s, but she knew many of her sorority sisters did. However, that has changed this year for Slapshak.
“Recently, my grandpa was diagnosed with another form of dementia,” said Slapshak. “I feel more empowered to keep fundraising, knowing that money is going towards research to help find a cure for him too,” said Slapshak.
This year’s walk was very special for Slapshak because she was walking in support of her grandfather.
However, because of COVID-19, the walk looked a little different this year. There was not a large in-person gathering like in years past. The walk was virtual, but the Sigma Kappa women still wanted to show their full support, so they hosted their own walk right on TCU’s campus.
Slapshak said they raised funds through social media, Venmo, phone calls and philanthropy events.
So far, the sorority has raised nearly $82,000, said Stevie Bisch, a junior communication studies and Spanish double major and the chapter president.
Bisch said the money raised during the Walk to End Alzheimer’s will go toward finding a cure for the disease and to supporting families who have been affected by the disease.
“We were so happy with the turn out,” said Bisch. “And happy we could bring the walk to campus this year!”