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Alpha Phi Delta Seeks to Help Veterans

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Operation Homefront aims to help U.S Veterans

Operation Homefront aims to help U.S Veterans

Jonny R

Jonny R

Operation Homefront aims to help U.S Veterans

Jake Fozard, Feature Writer

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This past week, Alpha Phi Delta fraternity held a fundraising raffle, ‘Hope for the Homefront’, with the proceeds going to Operation Homefront, which is a non-for-profit organization that provides social and financial aid to families of U.S. military veterans.

With prizes like watches and speakers, there was plenty of incentive to purchase the various tickets being sold, if not for the cause that the event’s cash is going toward.

“[It’s for] the people who fought for us, for their families specifically. Unfortunately there are many veterans who don’t have enough money to give to their families, [who can’t] provide for their families because they aren’t at home,” says Carlos Mercedes-Meran, Vice President of Programming for Alpha Phi Delta. “With this philanthropy, we give their families the opportunity to have these basic things.”

Operation Homefront, started in 2002 after the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Center, seeks to provide assistance to families through the distribution of financial assistance for things like rent, food and school supplies.

The organization also provides temporary transitional housing as well as mortgage-free permanent housing for United States veterans and their families.

Operation Homefront seeks to provide a support structure for the families with events including Star Spangled Baby Showers, the Back-to-School Brigade and Holiday Meals for Military, offering these programs for households faced with the serious repercussions of military deployment.

“We looked around [for a nonprofit] and [Operation Homefront] helps families, they help them get something as simple as school supplies for the children of veterans,” says Meran. “[The] way that they take care of family, that’s what we’re about too.”

This isn’t the first time Alphi Phi Delta has been involved with veterans either, according to Tylor Salomon, Social Chair for Alphi Phi Delta.

“Early in the semester, we were having a bake sale, gathering money so we could buy supplies to buy supplies like perishables to donate to veterans,” says Salomon. “The company we were going through to make sure the money went to the right place told us to collect perishables, so we sold cookies and brownies during common hour at Pace in Kessel. After that we [were able to buy] a lot of food, probably enough to fill a pool table.”

Although not many attended the event outside of Alpha Phi Delta members, money was still raised during the peak hours of Friday night, and that money that will be well spent, according to the Better Business Bureau and Charity Watch.

Charity Watch is a watchdog corporation that ranks, among other things, how much of the collected money actually goes into programs a given charity runs, with Operation Homefront funneling nearly eighty percent of their proceeds into their programs, giving them a grade of A compared to other charities.

The Better Business Bureau has also signed off on Operation Homefront, having met all ‘accountability standards’ the BBB uses, one of which includes the salaries executives of these nonprofits receive.

While the event was really more of a relaxed meetup for those in attendance than anything, the money raised is a positive thing for fraternities looking to give back for whatever reason, since fraternities such as Alpha Phi Delta are in fact required to have each member serve at least eight community service hours each semester.

According to Salomon, all that really matters is that you’re there putting in the time.

“If you see the brothers of Alpha Phi Delta, how they dress- first impression is really key- you’ll see we’re not just [typical] frat guys,” says Tylor Salomon. “[On] Friday, we could be doing whatever we want, but we’re here, taking time to help veterans.”

 

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