Alpha Chis fight domestic violence

Pies were thrown on a cold overcast day on the Quad in the name of combating domestic violence.

Alpha Chi Omega’s Go Purple Week spread domestic violence awareness through a week of events where Albion students were encouraged to attend, donate money, and “throw pies not punches.” The event lasted from October 29th through November 1st. The event raised nearly $1000, which was donated to Safe Place, a battered women’s shelter in Battle Creek.

“The thing about Go Purple Week is that we not only raise money, but we also raise awareness,” said Dana Sorenson, Birmingham senior. “One of the main things that’s important about domestic violence is about addressing the issue and making it not a private issue, but a public one.”

The first event was Pie an Alpha Chi, where Alpha Chi sisters were pied on the Quad. Anna Bickerstaff, Grosse Pointe junior, was a major coordinator for Go Purple Week. She said the pie-throwing event exceeded expectations despite dreary weather that resulted from Hurricane Sandy.

“We sold over 100 pies,” she said. “Which is way better than we were expecting because it was during the Sandy fiasco.”

To throw a pie cost $2, and for $5 the pie could be smashed into the Alpha Chi’s face. Sorenson was pied 15 times and certainly felt the difference between the $2 throws and the $5 smashings.

“People will miss, but they can shove it up your nose,” she said. “But it was good, we raised a lot of money.”

The largest event was on Thursday. A-Chi-Roke, a karaoke dance contest consisting of teams of fraternities and sororities with a twist.

“They have to change the words of the songs to domestic violence facts,” Bickerstaff said. “They had to include ‘Safe Place,’ which is the name of the shelter, and they had to have two or three domestic violence facts.”

Over 60 people competed in A-Chi-Roke. Kappa Delta and Delta Tau Delta were the winning sorority and fraternity respectively.

Wally Kacher, Grosse Ile junior, was a participant on the winning Delta Tau Delta team. The Delts used the song, “Flavor of the Week,” by American Hi-Fi. The lyrics were changed to reflect a girl who feels weak because of her boyfriend.

“We rehearsed it everyday for a week for an hour each,” Kacher said. “We did it over and over again until we perfected it. Each kick, each swing of the arms was perfect.”

A-Chi-Roke attracted over 100 people who were able to learn about domestic violence in a new way.

“I learned a lot,” Kacher said. “I did not know that the number one cause of injury among women in this entire country is men. [Purple Week] definitely teaches a lot.”

Another event in Go Purple Week was a self-defense class aimed for women. An Alpha Chi’s mother taught the class.

“She came in and taught us a bunch of self-defense moves, and how to be safe in sketchy areas and, if someone’s grabbing you, how to get out of those situations,” Bickerstaff said.

The class also focused on gaining new instincts. Many women who are caught in threatening situations instinctively freeze up and remain quiet. The class sought to change this perception by teaching the students to speak up and act.

Sororities and fraternities competed in Go Purple Week on the basis of participation and donations. Kappa Delta and Delta Tau Delta were the overall winners.  The event is still relatively new, but it exceeded expectations with the help of the whole Greek community.

“Last year was the first time we did it in a long time and I think it turned out really well,” Sorenson said. “A lot of the fraternities really did step up and they did a lot of really good songs that were not only interesting, but incorporated facts about domestic violence and information about Safe Place.”


Photo courtesy of Emily Frikken

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.