The energy and enthusiasm at of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. (AKA) Omega Omega Chapter’s “17th Annual Day of Sharing” was phenomenal. More than 200 members, students and community partners attended the chapter’s celebration of scholastic achievement and community service at Independence Blue Cross headquarters in downtown Philadelphia recently.
The Rev. Lorina Marshall Blake, chapter president and president of the Independence Blue Cross Foundation, noted how the event has grown since its inception in 1995. She extended a warm welcome and expressed gratitude to all in attendance. Following the invocation by Blake, the chapter’s first vice president and 2012 event chair, Carol Parkinson-Hall was introduced. Blake credited Parkinson for her consistent support and described the event as, “a celebration of our youth and their accomplishments.”
The 17th Annual Day of Sharing Omega Omega Chapter awarded over $50,000 in college scholarships and community partnership grants this year alone. The chapter has raised an incredible $492,500 for these initiatives over the past seven years. In addition to honoring the academic success of high school graduates, community organizations making a positive impact on our community are recognized.
The program also featured remarks by Sherilynn Johnson Kimble, board president of The 1926 Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Omega Omega Chapter; Dolores Parker, president, Ivy Cultural and Educational Foundation; college scholarship recipients; community partnership awardees; Edyth Ingram Award presentation to the “Lest We Forget” Museum; and performances by the Omega Omega Ensemble. Sisters Tiffany and Tiara Thompson also performed a lovely string duet and William Ramsey led us in a beautiful rendition of “The Negro National Anthem.”
Scholarship recipients, including one young lady still wearing her cap and gown from graduation earlier in the day, proudly and gratefully accepted certificates and checks from chapter officials. It was uplifting to hear these articulate young people speak about their plans to matriculate to various colleges and universities throughout the country. These institutions included Hampton University, Spelman College, La Salle University, California University of Pennsylvania and many more. These outstanding young men and women plan to major in a range of majors including biology, law, engineering, communications and other areas of interest.
Community Partnership Awardees for 2012 included: Charlie Mack’s Party4Peace Weekend in Collaboration with Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Omega Omega Chapter and Keystone Mercy Health Plan/“Healthy Hoops Program,” Chosen 300 Ministries, Northwest Victim Services, Career Wardrobe, Black Women’s Health Alliance, Covenant House, Pa., Haven Youth Center Inc., Urban Garden – Teens for Good, Earth Keepers, Fresh Visions Youth Theatre Co., ACHIEVability, Dawn’s Place, Domestic Violence Walk, Philadelphia Anti-Drug/Anti-Violence Network, the National Association of University Women, Philadelphia Branch, Stephen Smith Towers, Tribune Charities and the Women’s Opportunities Resource Center.
Omega Omega Chapter members who presented community awards to these outstanding organization and diligently headed program initiatives were: Lisa Johnson and Tamika Farmbry (Emerging Youth Program); Patricia Robinson-Burns (Health Program); Stephanie Marsh (Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability Program) (Global Poverty Program); Dr. Dawn Blue (Economic Security Program); Inger Taylor (Social Justice and Human Rights Program) and Dr. Delores Williams (Internal Leadership Training for External Service Program).
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., founded in 1908 at Howard University, is the first Greek-letter organization for African-American college women. Headquartered in Chicago, Ill., it is one of the world’s leading service organizations. The Sorority’s members have made a commitment “to serve all mankind” through a nucleus of more than 250,000 women in 958 chapters in the United States, the Caribbean, Europe, Asia and Africa. Attorney Carolyn House Stewart is the 28th International President (2010–2014). The current program theme is “Global Leadership Through Timeless Service.”
Omega Omega Chapter was chartered in 1926 and is the oldest graduate chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. in the Philadelphia region. The first president and sorority founder, Ethel Hedgemann Lyle, was the visionary. It has over 400 members serving the Philadelphia area community. Omega Omega has provided programs, services, grants, and scholarships to women, men, children and families for over 85 years.
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Omega Omega Chapter is congratulated for its ongoing community service and another major milestone. The entire membership extends special thanks to Independence Blue Cross for the generous use of their facilities.
Best wishes for continued success to all involved!