Pi Beta Phi philanthropy event raises money for literacy


    More than two hundred students participated in Pi Beta Phi’s on-campus philanthropy event, “Dodge The Arrow,” on Oct. 2. The event was a men and women’s dodgeball tournament that raised awareness and money for Pi Beta Phi’s philanthropy of literacy. 

    Paige Peabody, vice president of philanthropy for the university's chapter of Pi Beta Phi, said Dodge The Arrow had a total of 15 men's teams and ten women's teams. Each team consisted of ten people.

    In addition to the event, Pi Beta Phi sold shirts to promote their cause as well as raise money. They also paired with McAlister’s Deli on University Drive in Fort Worth where ten percent of the restaurant's proceeds from 5-10 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 2, went to the Pi Beta Phi Foundation. 

    Peabody said the Pi Beta Phi Foundation focuses on promoting literacy initiatives across the nation. The university's chapter raised $10,000 last spring for their philanthropy. The money raised from Dodge The Arrow has not yet been accounted for, she said.

    According to the Pi Beta Phi Foundation website, this year is the 100th year the sorority has been linked to literacy service. Illiteracy is a leading factor in homelessness, domestic abuse, poverty and lack of health care, according to the website.

    “Being literate is something we all take for granted. Learning how to read is critical to a child’s success and putting new books in the hands of the children who need them most is a start to overcoming illiteracy,” said Christie Nelson, junior business marketing major and member of Pi Beta Phi.

    “Dodge The Arrow” is not the only event Pi Beta Phi hosts for their philanthropy. Throughout the school year, the sorority promotes their literacy platform through volunteering at local Fort Worth schools as well as the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Fort Worth. Their activities include reading to children and donating books through an organization called Champions are Readers, Peabody said.

    Champions are Readers is a reading enhancement program for third-grade students. According to the program's website, the organization's goal is to help improve reading skills and encourage a love for reading in children.

    “I am so grateful that I can be a part of an organization that works so hard to help children that truly need it," said Sarah Maze, president of the university chapter of Pi Beta Phi. "My favorite part of how Pi Phi helps with literacy is how we get to see the results directly because of the hands-on work we do in classrooms. It is a very humbling experience.”