PHILANTHROPY AND COMMUNITY SERVICE GUIDE
F ROM T H E E X E C U T IV E D IRECTO R
DEAR BROTHERS, I’ve been involved with Sigma Pi Fraternity for over 24 years; and I’ve seen many different aspects of fraternity life in that time. As a Founding Father of Alpha-Phi Chapter, I saw a group of men - including myself come together with the purpose of creating a unique fraternal experience at the University of Georgia. As a volunteer, I saw the power of holding our undergraduates to the oath we’ve all sworn to be better than the average man. As the Associate Executive Director, I’ve seen the impact the men of Sigma Pi, both undergraduates and alumni alike, have on the lives of each other and their communities. One key way to show the world what it means to be a fraternity man is to show the good that we do on a daily basis. Philanthropy, community service and how we act in class or at work all show the positives that we are as fraternity men. I look at our Creed that we recite before every Chapter meeting: “I believe in Sigma Pi, a Fellowship of kindred minds, united in Brotherhood to advance Truth and Justice, to promote Scholarship, to encourage Chivalry, to diffuse Culture, and to develop Character, in the Service of God and Man; and I will strive to make real the Fraternity’s ideals in my own daily life.” In 2003, Sigma Pi developed the ACE Project to set us apart from other groups. Since then ACE has helped re-emphasize the importance of creating a partnership with universities across North America. With its key focus on serving the respective communities of our undergraduate members, ACE has had a tremendous impact on our campuses, and in the lives of our members, that will last for years. Through our partnership with Donate Life, we have the opportunity to provide support in a uniquely human way. It’s an investment that lasts longer than dollars; it’s an investment that can surpass a lifetime. It’s the kind of service to man that we should reflect on each time we state our Creed. We pride ourselves on being Fraternity men; more importantly, men of Sigma Pi. It is something we all hold dear and each of us feels a special way about our brotherhood. We all joined this brotherhood for a reason. Some joined for the comradery, Others joined for the social atmosphere, and even some for a sense of belonging to something larger than themselves. How do you explain why you became a member? How do you show people what it means to be a Sigma Pi? What do you, or your chapter, do to set yourselves apart from all the other fraternities on your campus that men can join? Progress is in our organization’s blood. Everyday we have the potential to do more and be more than yesterday. We can do more in our efforts to engage with our community and improve our host institutions. We can do more in our efforts to raise the number of donor and tissue registrants across the country. We can do more to propel fraternity life forward. Fraternally,
Jason Walker (Georgia ’96) Interim Executive Director
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CON T EN TS
A B O U T S IGM A P I Sigma Pi Fraternity, International was founded at Vincennes University, Vincennes, Ind. on February 26, 1897. The Executive Office is located in Lebanon, Tenn. Sigma Pi has chartered more than 230 chapters in North America and has initiated over 100,000 members since 1897. The founding fathers of Sigma Pi Fraternity are: Rolin Rosco James (1879 - 1953) William Raper Kennedy (1877 - 1944) James Thompson Kingsbury (1877 - 1950) George Martin Patterson (1877 - 1960)
02 ACE PROJECT 03 What Is The ACE Project? 04 How Does The ACE Project Work? 04 ACE Project Vs. Community Service
Sigma Pi Fraternity 106 N. Castle Heights Ave. Lebanon, TN 37087
Member, North-American Interfraternity Conference FRATERNITY COMMUNICATIONS ASSOCIATION
05 ACE Project Branding
06 ACE Project Action Plan
08 Sample ACE Project Ideas
09 Examples Of Successful ACE Projects 10 Writing A Press Release
OUR MISSION To advance man’s quest for excellence ★
OUR VISION Our men will strive for excellence by living our core values. ★
OUR CORE VALUES Promote fellowship Develop character and leadership Advance heightened moral awareness Enable academic achievement Inspire service
12 DONATE LIFE 13 Sigma Pi + Donate Life America 14 Gift of Life & Sigma Pi Connections 16 Organ Donors Are Life Donors 18 Preparing Your Chapter For An Event 19 State Contact Infor mation 20 Example Report
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ACE PROJ ECT
WHAT IS THE ACE PROJECT? Chapters and colonies of Sigma Pi Fraternity can be found on campuses throughout North America. In 2003, the Fraternity sought to establish an international service program, The ACE Project, specifically designed to give back to our host institutions. However, with the growing diversity of schools and the need for campus-specific action, the Fraternity realized it would need to develop a program that would allow each chapter and colony of Sigma Pi to perform an event tailored directly to the needs of their university. The Altruistic Campus Experience or ACE Project is designed to encourage our membership to develop pride and respect for the place that they will one day call their alma mater. Each chapter is encouraged to conduct a service event that is specifically designed to benefit their campus. This requires the men of Sigma Pi to find an â€œunmet needâ€? in the campus community. By asking our undergraduates to reach out and determine where they can make a difference, we hope to not only develop a better student and brother, but also a loyal alumnus that will continue to give back to his alma mater long after he has graduated. While the ACE Project idea is exclusive to Sigma Pi, the manifestation is rarely so. Each chapter and colony performs the project and regularly invites fellow student organizations to take part in the event which helps feed the spirit of service-learning on campuses throughout North America. The ACE Project is the only international service project of its kind, designed to give back to their host institutions, performed by an NIC-affiliated organization.
THE ACE PROJECT was designed with four main elements that make up the foundation of the program: LEAD, SERVE, ENGAGE and INSPIRE. LEAD - With ACE Project, members of the Sigma Pi chapter lead by identifying and addressing a problem on their campus and determining a solution. ENGAGE - ACE Project is focused on building a partnership between students and the university. Members of Sigma Pi engage discussion with university administration to enlighten them on the problem that has been idenitified, as well as the proposed solution. SERVE - After garnering the support of administrators and students, the members of the chapter take action to serve the university by creating a plan, organizing a structured event, and implementing the solution to the problem. INSPIRE - Sigma Pi members will inspire a campus-wide culture of servant leadership dedicated to the betterment of their future alma mater.
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HOW DOES THE ACE PROJECT WORK? The ACE Project is the catalyst to advancing campus and community partnerships for fraternity and sorority life, starting with Sigma Pi chapters across North America. This partnership aids Sigma Pi to break down the stereotype that fraternities aren’t relevent to the modern college experience, thus finding opportunities to serve our host institutions. The benefits are seen not only from the visible outcome of ACE, but within the meaningful relationships built between the undergraduate members and campus professionals. The ACE Project is a way to help strengthen the bonds of the students with the academic institution.
Our chapters and colonies volunteer thousands of manhours of service for ACE Projects, planting trees as a campus beautification project, replenishing blood supplies for university hospitals, creating campus-based food pantries for students in need, renewing and rehabilitating campus areas, and fundraising for various campus departments. Each project is different and is specially designed for the needs of each individual campus. Chapters and colonies are encouraged to promote their project, invite other organizations to help, and get the good news into the local media to promote the ACE Project and encourage others to give back as well.
ACE PROJECT vs. COMMUNITY SERVICE The ACE Project differentiates itself from traditional community service by providing for the enhancement of the host institutions well-being through means of giving back to the people, structure and mission/values of the campus as a whole. We are always proud of all the community service and philanthropy that our chapters perform. Every chapter should continue with these traditions. Even so, we want to ensure that the ACE Project and community service don’t get mixed up.
through selfless service all while having an enjoyable time. How are you going to engage your members and fellow community leaders in this project? How will you communicate this project to your community? How will the people helping out feel? What will participants learn from this? What will your chapter gain from this project? How is your chapter making this a signature event? The three key factors above should all be present in your ACE Project in order to ensure that it is serving its true purpose and full potential.
ALTRUISTIC - The fundamental principle of the ACE Project is altruism; selfless service for the benefit of others. Inspiring service is in our core values. As Sigma Pi men, it is extremely important that we give back.
When brainstorming ways to contribute to your host institution, get into the mentality of, “ What would I like to see as a student of this school?” and not just “What can Sigma Pi do for this school?”
CAMPUS - The ACE Project is your chapter’s gift to your university/college community. The project should directly benefit your student body, faculty, administrators and/or alumni.
Sigma Pi wants every organization’s ACE Project to be successful. Event planning can be a time-consuming, yet rewarding, experience for any organization. Chapters and colonies can increase their chances of holding successful events by obtaining the required permissions and planning the details well in advance. Remember, the Executive Office Staff and your advisors are available to help your organization think about the tasks needed to plan events.
EXPERIENCE - A strong ACE project should be an experience to remember. Chapters are encouraged to think creatively how you can impact your campus community
“While there are a lot of events that my chapters sponsor at TCNJ, few have the intention, affect, and appreciation that the Sigma Pi ACE project does. It’s a class act from beginning to end and truly seeks to give back in a unique way to the community.” Dave Conner, Assistant Director for Fraternity & Sorority Life at TCNJ
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ACE PROJECT BRANDING LOGOMARK
O LIVE WREATH
WO RD M AR K
The logomark for the the official international service program of Sigma Pi. Sigma Pi is the only Greek-letter organization with a program of this type, which is specifically designed to give back to our host institutions. OLIVE WREATH
CO LO R LO GO M ARK
TAGLI N E
The symbol of the program is the olive wreath, which is a modernization of the symbol found on the Sigma Pi badge. The olive wreath represents victory, which our members will achieve by accomplishment of the program. The left half of the wreath represents the lack of service given directly to the host institutions, and the right half represents the desire of Sigma Pi to fulfill that need. WORDMARK The wordmark consists of the programs name, “ACE Project”, along with the meaning of the acronym “ACE”, which is “Altruistic Campus Experience”. Below, the Greek letters for Sigma Pi are placed between two seperator lines. TAGLINE The tagline of the program is illustrated in the lower region of the logomark. “lead, engage, serve and inspire” are the elements that make up the foundation of the ACE Project.
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ACE PROJECT ACTION PLAN - PLANNING ELECT/APPOINT PROJECT LEADERS - The very first thing your chapter should do is appoint or elect an ACE Project Chairman or committee to spearhead the project. By selecting a person or small group to lead this project for your chapter, you are creating additional leadership opportunities for your members and also delegating the main responsibilities of the project planning. SOURCE A PROJECT - Be sure to utilize all possible resources and departments when trying to discover the needs of your host institution. Schedule a meeting with any of the following areas on your campus to engage in a conversation around improving life on campus for everyone: • Campus Fraternity/Sorority Advisor
• Office of Community Service/Civic Engagement
• Faculty Advisor
• Facilities/Grounds Crew
• Chapter/Colony Director
• Student Health Services
• Academic Deans
• Psychological Services/Counseling Center
• Dean of Students
• Student Government
• Vice President of Student Life
• Student Newspaper
• University Police or Community Police
• University President
• Residential Life
FILL OUT ACE PROJECT APPROVAL (DUE TWO WEEKS BEFORE EVENT) - Once you have met with your Fraternity/Sorority Advisor, have them fill out the report. sigmapi.org/ace-project-approval BOOK LOCATION OR VENUE CREATE MARKETING MATERIALS - In order to make the desired level of impact on your campus, the following methods of communication and advertising are key: • Social Media • Facebook event page • Twitter feed posts • Instagram competitions FILL OUT ACE PROJECT PRE-EVENT PRESS RELEASE & SOCIAL MEDIA PAGE - At it’s core, your chapter/colony’s ACE Project is to engage your community in a beneficial project. Having a press release and social media promotion can be your first step in doing just that. You can only interact with so many people face-toface in a single day, but you can reach thousands through the internet. It is important to make sure your message is being correctly conveyed across all media platforms so that your project can have the most participation possible. sigmapi.org/ace-project-pre-event SET GOALS & DEFINE OBJECTIVES - Goals are absolutely crucial for any planned event or program. How will you know if what you did was successful if there is not an initial goal to compare it to? Effective goal setting follows the SMART principles - that is Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound. It is important to be as detailed as possible when setting your SMART goals because it will give you a clear idea of what exactly you are attempting to accomplish. • Here are some examples of SMART goals: • The ACE committee will raise $500.00 by November 11, 2015. • The ACE Chairman will reach 1,000 people on Facebook by November 11, 2015 • The ACE Chairman will have at least 10 student organizations signed up to participate in our project by November 11, 2015. ESTABLISH BUDGET - Not all ACE Project require a large amount of money to be successful. If you event does require money, explore the possibility of co-sponsorships with other organizations or departments. Student Government can also be a good source of funding for your event if it is truly targeted to the entire student body.
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ACE PROJECT ACTION PLAN - ESTABLISH TIMELINE SIX WEEKS BEFORE PROGRAM/EVENT: • Secure external funding and facility reservations • Request quotes, select, create, and order artwork for promotional material. Reference Sigma Pi Fraternity, International Brand Standards. sigmapi.org/brand-standards • Create a marketing plan • Submit press release to university and local media outlets FOUR WEEKS BEFORE PROGRAM/EVENT: • If applicable, meet with facility event planners to walk through event facility and finalize set-up & equipment needs • Order food from approved facility vendors • Secure marketing permission and begin marketing the program. Below is a list of ideas that have helped other groups create a successful event: • Flyers, posters, handbills signs, banners • University newspaper advertisements • Organization and FSL website • Social Media campaigns • FSL newsletter • Promotional items • Closed circuit monitors in university buildings • Word of mouth • Begin to develop risk management plan with Sergeant-of-Arms & Risk Management chair TWO WEEKS BEFORE PROGRAM/EVENT: • Continue to market program (minimum start week for publicity) • Assign day-of tasks for committee members • Set training/overview meeting time • Finalize risk management plan ONE WEEK BEFORE PROGRAM/EVENT: • Continue to market program • Confirm technical requirements (i.e. room set-up, audio and visual checks, etc) • Confirm all chapter/colony members understand their specific roles and responsibilities for the event • If applicable, confirm arrival time for entertainment • Develop a program itinerary and make copies • Member training/overview meeting • Be sure to review risk management procedures DAY OF PROGRAM/EVENT: • Arrive early to make sure facility is set up correctly • Bring office supplies just in case: Tape, stapler, pens, markers, highlighters, scrap paper • If applicable, perform sound and light check • Greet entertainment and guests • Conduct final walk through • Enjoy the program!
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ACE PROJECT ACTION PLAN - POST EVENT WITHIN 24 HOURS AFTER THE PROGRAM/EVENT: • Walk through and clean up facility • Write and mail “thank you” cards to everyone who assisted • Meet with committee to evaluate program. Reflect back on goals and objectives • Recognize committee and chapter members • Remove event publicity • Compile all notes and resources from the project for transition purposes FILL OUT ACE PROJECT REPORT - The ACE Project Report is a resource that allows you to compare your goals and expected outcomes of the event to what actually happened. It’s a way for the chapter/colony to determine exactly how successful they were, what they did well, and what areas need more attention in the future. Additionally, it is a tool the Executive Office can use to compare your chapter/colony’s year-to-year progress and compare that to other chapters/colonies across the country. sigmapi.org/ace-project-report
SAMPLE ACE PROJECT IDEAS SMALL ACE PROJECT • Campus Clean-Up • Campus Movie Night • Study Supplies during mid-terms or final MEDIUM ACE PROJECT • Campus beautification w/ Facilities such as planting trees or refreshing the flower gardens on campus. • Paint the curbs on campus • Hold an appreciation luncheon for a Faculty of Staff group. • Volunteer at the Campus Daycare. Any department that is willing to accept student volunteers is a great ACE opportunity. LARGE ACE PROJECT • Open a student food pantry. You will need to run a food donation station year-round in order to keep it stocked but you will be making a lasting impact on your campus. • Multi-Phase ACE Projects. Doing a series of ACE projects over the course of the year will begin to standardize the fact that your chapter really cares about the campus.
“The ACE Project is a unique opportunity for the Sigma Pi men to personalize their impact that they have within their own community. The men at NJIT saw a need to appreciate and thank many of the campus service employees as they are often overlooked and taken for granted. Over the course of a week these men made it their mission to serve and thank in various ways all employees of the police department, physical plant, dining service, and janitors, all while no one else would.” Thea Zunick, Ed.D., Associate Director of Student Life,Stevens Institute of Technology
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EXAMPLES OF SUCCESSFUL ACE PROJECTS In the 2014-15 fiscal year, we had 72 chapters and colonies complete a total of 76 ACE Projects. As always, there were many great projects and one thing is evident – we are leaving our mark at our host institutions across North America. We receive compliments all the time from our host institutions, thanking Sigma Pi for their ACE Project contributions. 2014-15 was no different when it came down to selecting and choosing the four top ACE Projects; one from each tier. TIER 1 - GAMMA-SIGMA CHAPTER AT THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI This chapter raised $2,100 dollars for the relationship and Sexual violence prevention center on campus and $4,500 for the Children’s Heart foundation. During homecoming, this chapter hosted a carnival. The event gave children and their families an opportunity to play on the inflatables, have cotton candy and popcorn, and watch members get dunked in the dunk tank, all for a great cause. TIER 2 - IOTA-KAPPA CHAPTER AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA This chapter united most of the fraternities, sororities and sports teams on campus to collect non-perishable food items for their on-campus food pantry. This campuses food pantry is committed to serving their students by providing basic needs including food, clothing, and personal hygiene items to foster continued academic success and increase retention for students in need. This project raised 1500 lbs of food. TIER 3 - THETA-DELTA CHAPTER AT THE COLLEGE OF NEW JERSEY On Day 1 of this chapter’s ACE Week, they held a Professor Appreciation night. On Day 2, the brothers showed their appreciation to the institution’s staff by providing a complimentary breakfast. On Day 3, the chapter replaced the dining hall employees and prepared and served dinner for the campus community. On Day 4, the chapter hosted a Dress for Success night with Delta Zeta sorority. This event educated students on how to appropriately dress in a work place. And on Day 5, the chapter held a Walk for Hope, which raised awareness of college student suicide. As noted by their campus newspaper, the walk was “the largest ever walk for suicide awareness to take place on a college campus.” TIER 4 - DELTA-ZETA CHAPTER AT THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI-ST. LOUIS This chapter worked with their University Child Development Center (UCDC), a special place for early childhood education, child care services, and educational research. The learn-through-play pedagogy makes use of problem-solving and experience to develop skills and concepts. This chapter helped rebuild and renovate the outdoor classroom for the center. They provided several hours of service to make this space more functional for the students to continue learning and growing together. S I G MAP I.ORG + 9
AC E PR OJ E C T
WRITING A PRESS RELEASE Adapted from: Meyer, M. (2012, September 6). The Six Components of a Great Press Release. Retreived from Site Pro News at bit.ly/ACE-PR A great press release consists of the following components: A headline, a summary, a dateline and lead, the body, boilerplate statement, and contact information. HEADLINE • The headline should be informative and should not be a sales pitch. • Do a little keyword research and include your keywords in the title. • The headline should be an attention getter. It is the first thing people will see. • Entice the reader to learn more with your headline. The length of the headline should be 60 characters if optimizing for Google or 120 characters for Yahoo. The format should be Title Case which means that you should capitalize the first letter of each word except for prepositions and words of 3 letters or less. Here is an example of a title: • Alpha-Alpha of Chapter of Sigma Pi Fraternity to Host ACE Project Event on Feb. 26 in Lebanon, Tenn. DATELINE AND LEAD PARAGRAPH The lead and the first paragraph of a press release tells you the who, what, when, where and why your reader should care about your press release. The best practice is to keep the lead paragraph, compelling, simple and short. Save the glowing adjectives for later. The idea is to grab your reader’s attention by giving the straight scoop on your story. Ideally the length of the lead should be 25 words or less. The format should be: (City, State, Month Day, Year) followed by the most important information that you would like to announce. Here is an example of the dateline and lead paragraph: • Lebanon, Tennessee, February 26, 2016 - Alpha-Alpha Chapter of Sigma Pi Fraternity, International will host an ACE Project event at the Mitchell House in Lebanon, Tenn. in which all members of the community are invited to participate. Here is a tip: Make sure you have your chapter name in the headline and/or the lead paragraph to make sure the press release is associated correctly. THE BODY COPY This is your chance to tell your story. Remember, this is not a sales pitch. This is supposed to be a news story. Think as if you were a reporter and had to come up with a story about your business for the newspaper or evening news. Keep your tone neutral like a news reporter is supposed to. In the center of the body include support for your story including quotes from interested parties or from those inside and outside the organization. Include any statistics, charts or backup to your claims in the story. Also include a link back to your website. The last paragraph of the body usually contains the least important information. Use this paragraph to re-state and to summarize points made in the headline and body. You can also include directions on how to get more information and any legal info you need to include. The length of the body of the release should be about 300-800 words.
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WRITING A PRESS RELEASE BOILERPLATE STATEMENT The boiler plate statement is usually the “About the Company” sentence. This is a general statement that can be used over and over without changing it. You can also include any disclaimers or legal information in this section. Here is an example of a Boilerplate Statement: • Sigma Pi Fraternity, International was founded in 1897 at Vincennes University, in Vincennes, Ind. Our Executive Office is located in Lebanon, Tenn. The Fraternity is one of the top men’s collegiate organizations in North America, with more than 120 active chapters and colonies in the United States and Canada. With over 101,000 alumni and 5,100 undergraduates, our men strive for excellence by living our core values to promote fellowship, develop character and leadership, advance heightened moral awareness, enable academic achievement, and inspire service. Sigma Pi is the only Greek-letter organization with an international service program, The ACE Project, specifically designed to give back to our host institutions. CONTACT INFORMATION This gives those who wish to contact you a way to do so. It should include your name, position, your company name, telephone number, website and email address. Note: Your email will not usually show up in the actual press release. Here is an example of Contact Information: • John Doe, President, Alpha-Alpha Chapter, Sigma Pi Fraternity, International, (615) 921-2300, www.sigmapi.org, email@example.com When creating a press release or any marketing collateral, please be sure to consult Sigma Pi Fraternity’s Brand Standards (sigmapi.org/brand-standards). Chapters are invited to send press releases for review by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Executive Office may use the press release to help support the event on an international level by posting on social media outlets.
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SIGMA PI + DONATE LIFE AMERICA ABOUT THE PARTNERSHIP In 2012, at the 51st biennial convocation for Sigma Pi Fraternity International, and just three years after the passing of brother Cameron Chana (Beta-Gamma ‘09), the Grand Chapter voted to partner with Donate Life as the organization’s international philanthropy. Cameron was, and still is today, the perfect example of what it means to be a man of Sigma Pi living his values. A scholar, an athlete, and a cornerstone of campus and community leadership, Cameron always looked to better himself and those around him. Sadly, Cameron passed on to the Adytum on High shortly after graduation in June of 2009; however, his legacy of caring continues with us. As an organ donor, Cameron had the ability to impact the lives of many others, even after his departure. It’s easy to fall into the belief that our Quest for Excellence ends after graduation. However, Cameron’s story reminds us all that our individual quests can continue for much longer than a lifetime. I hope that the information provided in this booklet will provide each of you with the inspiration to continue the legacy that Cameron brought to Sigma Pi, while elevating our organization’s dedication to our international partners. Fraternally, GS E. Andrew Morris Murray State ’70 email@example.com
PROGRAM OBJECTIVES Sigma Pi is pleased to announce our continued partnership with Donate Life America. This partnership, which truly embodies the spirit and values of Sigma Pi, is focused on the mission of saving and healing lives through the miracle of organ, eye and tissue donation. More specifically, this program is designed to achieve the following objectives: • Educate and create awareness on the importance of organ, eye and tissue donation among Sigma Pi chapters and alumni • Drive donor registration (or reaffirmation) among Sigma Pi chapters and alumni via the Sigma Pi/ Donate Life America registration portal • Educate, create awareness among & drive registration of students across campus during Donate Life Month Again, we are thrilled at this leadership opportunity and look forward to participation from all Sigma Pi chapters. The following pages outline additional details about donation and chapter requirements. DONATE LIFE AMERICA Donate Life America is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit alliance of national organizations and state teams across the United States committed to increasing organ, eye and tissue donation. Donate Life America manages and promotes the national brand for donation, Donate Life; develops and executes effective multimedia donor-education programs; motivates the American public to register now as organ, eye and tissue donors; and assists Donate Life State Teams and national partners in facilitating highperforming donor registries.
Mission: To drive individuals, organizations and communities to increase the number of designated organ, eye and tissue donors who save and heal lives. Vision: A nation that embraces organ, eye and tissue donation as a fundamental human responsibility. What is Organ, eye and tissue donation? When you sign up to be an organ, eye and tissue donor on the national registry (RegisterMe.org) or with state registry, you are registering your decision to become a donor upon your death. This document of gift provides legal authorization to have your organs, corneas and/or tissue made available for those in need of lifesaving and healing transplants. It also removes the burden of decision making from your family during a time of shock and grief.
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CAMERON CHANA (EASTERN ILLINOIS ’09) Cameron started college at Eastern Illinois University in 2005 where he majored in Marketing. He absolutely blossomed in college, excelling in academics, extracurricular activities, club sports, and his beloved Sigma Pi Fraternity. After graduation, Cameron declined multiple job offers opting to begin his MBA program. He was a beacon positioned to make such positive impact. A long-standing tradition to kick off summer was the annual houseboat excursion to nearby Lake Shelbyville. This year was especially meaningful for Cameron since 13 of his Sigma Pi pledge brothers would be attending – one last hoorah before starting new jobs or heading to grad school. This would be the first year a bus was contracted for transport to and from the outing. From all descriptions, the day was almost perfect. Almost, until the open-air double decker bus took an unauthorized route as it returned to campus. Two young men were killed instantly as the bus went under the bridge. At 7:20 on the evening of May 30, 2009 we received that dreaded call that is every parent’s worst nightmare, “There has been an accident”. Our beautiful 22 year-old son, who graduated college three weeks earlier, who was starting grad school, who has so much to give to this life, would not be coming back to our home. We were told he was brain dead. The circle of life was out of sequence. Parents are not meant to bury their children. Our son, Cameron, was dead. This was the day our lives collided with the world of donation.
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We were now participants in an incredible process – a process beyond anything we could have imagined. For you see, Cameron left us the first of many blessings after his death – he had taken all appropriate steps to be an organ, eye and tissue donor. He had registered his choice to be a donor! That simple act saved us from having to make that difficult decision. There was no question that donation was in complete harmony with the way Cameron lived his life. For the next 36 hours, we witnessed teams of doctors, nurses and staff working together for the purpose of bringing the gift of life to those in need. We found ourselves rooting with encouragement as matches were found for each of Cameron’s precious organs. At 22, he was 6’4” of total goodness and a perfect donor. On June 1st, recovery teams arrived. Cameron’s recovery surgery began a domino effect of hope as prayers were answered for five people near-death that were awaiting their gift of life. Cameron’s heart, lungs, liver, two kidneys,two eyes and 52 different tissues would benefit their recipients. Five life-saving gifts, 54 life-healing gifts – 59 in all. Cameron gave the ultimate gift of love – life through organ, eye and tissue donation. As a parent, the donation process has provided comfort and purpose that would otherwise not be possible in Cameron’s death. There is nothing that can replace our son; however, we have truly been given the gift of hope through Cameron’s ultimate gift. Our family is out of balance – a seat remains unfilled at our table. Imagine what our world would be like if upon our death, each one of us positively changed the lives of 59 strangers? Register your decision to be a donor – educate others – be a leader. - Lori Chana, mother of Cameron Chana
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GIFT OF LIFE & SIGMA PI CONNECTIONS I think of my donor every day. I do not know who he was or his family but they are constantly in my thoughts and prayers. Because of their selfless decision at what must have been such a difficult time I was able to get my life back.
MARK MILLER (BRIDGEWATER STAT E ’89) I am blessed. Just over four years ago I was given the gift of life. I got very sick, very fast! My wife Linda and my two kids Matthew and Megan (aged nine and 12 at the time) had just recently returned from a September trip to Disney World and everything seemed fine. Matthew was in the middle of his soccer season and both were doing well in school. Around Halloween I began to feel ill and developed some serious symptoms. I quickly made an appointment with my doctor to get checked and was immediately admitted to the hospital. Soon after I was given the news that my liver was failing and I would most likely need a transplant. This news hit hard and for the first few weeks I was doing ok and managing to go about life. But soon I started to take a turn for the worse. I fatigued very easily and the ability to do even the most basic things became very difficult. Just taking a shower in the morning was exhausting and took all the energy I had. On December 26th, I was admitted to the hospital, and with the exception of one 24-hour period, I would remain there until after my transplant.While in the hospital, I had the support of so many people that helped me get through. First of all my wife and kids! They went through so much during this time and my wife had to work extra hard just to try and keep things as “normal” as possible. The rest of my family and community rallied around me as well, and I am so grateful. This includes my brothers from Sigma Pi who mean the world to me. Especially to Herb Blanchard (Eta-Eta, Bridgewater State ’91), who visited me almost every day! Also, those that helped organize and attend a benefit in my name meant so much to me.
I am so thankful for each day! I’m now able to look forward to the little things in life that often go unnoticed, or may seem to be a nuisance at times. Many people have asked me how I felt after the transplant and the best way I can describe it is by comparing myself to a couple of characters from a few favorite movies and how they must have felt, one being George Bailey from “It’s a Wonderful Life,” when the whole community was there for him in his time of need. I am truly grateful to all those friends, coworkers, and medical personnel etc that were there for me when I needed it. The second is Ebenezer Scrooge from “A Christmas Carol” when he woke up on Christmas morning so excited to realize he had another chance. The final character is James Ryan from “Saving Private Ryan,” at the end when he asks his wife if he has lived a good life thinking back to when he was saved and what he did to deserve all that was done for him. The Captain just told him to live a good life. I often think of what I have witnessed and accomplished since my transplant on 2/18/11. Because of my donor I have been able to: celebrate four more birthdays and anniversaries (and counting), witness both of my kids become teenagers and experience all the joy that comes along with it, watch my Bruins, Patriots, and Red Sox each win another championship, be there for my father as my mother lost her life to Alzheimer’s, go to a Sox game with my dad, as well as another with my son, go to two Springsteen concerts with Herb, got back to work within three months of my surgery, go on a cruise with my family and friends, go to Las Vegas and to Disney World with my family, go to many soccer games and baseball games, mow my lawn, shovel my driveway (even the mundane things I am able to find joy in). This is a very small partial list but I hope you get the point. Because of my donor I have been able to experience LIFE. And for that I am so thankful. I am a proud brother of Sigma Pi and it makes me even prouder to know that my brothers are working with Donate Life to promote the importance of organ, eye and tissue donation.
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ORGAN DONORS ARE LIFE DONORS WHY BE A DONOR? Transplantation is one of the most remarkable success stories in the history of medicine. It offers patients a new chance at healthy, productive and normal lives and returns them to their families, friends and communities. Transplantation relies on the generosity of organ, eye and tissue donors; but there are not enough donors to fill the need. As a result, an average of 22 people die each day because the organ they need is not donated in time. WHY DO YOU NEED TO THINK ABOUT THIS NOW? The vast majority of Americans support donation as an opportunity to let their organs and tissue give life to others when they no longer need them. Unfortunately, many people overlook the important step of registering as a donor Donors are often people who have been involved in sudden, unexpected accidents. Their family is then faced with making the decision at a time if shock and grief. Registering now relieves your family of this burden and serves as a real gift to them as well to the grateful recipient of your donation. WHAT CAN BE TRANSPLANTED?
Allows unaided breathing
Provides years of active living
Save patients from dialysis and early death
Repair cardiac defects
PANCREAS Eliminates insulin for diabetics
INTESTINES Aids digestion
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ORGAN DONORS ARE LIFE DONORS LIVES SAVED EACH YEAR
30,000 organ transplants (from 8,500 deceased and 6,000 living donors) More than one million tissue transplants 48,000 corneal transplants
THE NEED IS GREAT
men, women and children await lifesaving organ transplants
Even the largest football stadium in the US could not fit the number of patients on the national transplant waiting list
of patients waiting are in need of a kidney*
of patients waiting are in need of a liver*
Another person is added to the waiting list every 10 minutes
Sadly, people die each year because the organs they need are not donated in time * a living donor is an option for these patients
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PREPARING YOUR CHAPTER FOR AN EVENT SUPPORTING THE MISSION Sigma Pi observes the month of April as Donate Life Month. Throughout April Sigma Pi will be sharing multiple stories of our brothers who have been impacted by the power of organ, eye and tissue donation. There also will be multiple campaigns through social media. During this month all of our chapters/members are requested to participate in these in order to continue spreading awareness. CHECKLIST FOR SUCCESS • Start planning early • Appoint member(s) to lead planning/coordinating efforts • Contact your local Donate Life representative • Schedule a table display, speaker or other awareness event on campus • Reserve space on campus • Invite other organizations, students and faculty to attend • Get the word out about the importance of donation and your events via social media, internal billboards, word of mouth, etc. SPEAKER EVENT - SHARE A STORY Throughout the country and within Sigma Pi there are many stories from those who have been touched by organ, eye and tissue donation. By working with your local Donate Life America Representative, we can coordinate speakers for your events to share these stories and inspire attendees to registered as donors. TABLE DISPLAYS Keys to successful tabling: • Keep it professional - utilize brand standard logos, printed materials, and marketing pieces. • Schedule your table times and locations with the school weeks in advance. • Table outside of an oversatuated area - try not to compete with everyone else. • Arrange special needs such as electrical outlets or additional table space. • Throw away your chairs. Stand in front of the table and reel people in. • Have an activity at the table - keep it engaging (giveaways, games, etc.) • Give specific responsibilities to your table staff of two-four members at a time. • Consider creating competitions for the team that gets the most registrants. • Keep things neat and simple. DONATE LIFE BLUE & GREEN DAY Celebrate Donate Life Blue & Green Day on Friday, April 15! Participate by wearing Green & Blue attire all day, and take pictures and tag Sigma Pi in them for us to share how your chapter celebrates. Better yet, recruit other organizations or your entire school to take part.
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STATE CONTACT INFORMATION Your local Donate Life State Team contact is a valuable resource to your chapterâ€™s efforts. They may be able to offer assistance at donor drives and tabling events, provide handouts and giveaways, and send speakers to talk to your chapter and/or campus. Your contact might even have opportunities for your chapter to volunteer within the local community during National Donate Life Month or throughout the year.
Jackie Lue Raia
firstname.lastname@example.org S I G M A P I.ORG + 1 9
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EXAMPLE REPORT In order to track the extraordinary work that your chapter and members are providing to Donate Life, as well as to receive Standards of Excellence credit, the Executive Office has developed a report that you will submit after each Donate Life event or drive. This form can be found online at sigmapi.org/donate-life-register. An example of the report is shown below:
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106 N. Castle Heights Ave Lebanon, Tennessee 37087 615.921.2300 â€˘ sigmapi.org