By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Community initiatives are basis of Delta Sigma Theta chapter
delta sigma theta
Members of Delta Sigma Theta donate care packages to those in need. - photo by Evan Newton

For the ladies of Delta Sigma Theta, community service and philanthropy projects are second nature.

Donning their traditional crimson and cream colors, the goal for the sisterhood was to abide by the standards set all the way back in 1913 – to commit to providing assistance to those in need.

On Feb. 22, their commitment to service continued, as members from the Covington Area Alumni Chapter (CAAC) donated several care packages of supplies to the Rainbow Community Shelter.

The packages included everyday essential items that will be used to help the unhoused.

Tawonna Hutchinson, an organizer and member of the Delta Sigma Theta CAAC chapter, shared her thoughts on the significance of this project.

“We created some packages for the unhoused to help support those in our community and to let them know that they are loved,” Hutchinson said.

In addition to Hutchinson, four other members including Yolanda Wyatt, Dione Mills, Demetrius Perry-Stokes and Derykka Miller were on-hand to provide the care packages.

The packages were prepared by the educational development committee’s youth initiative program – the Dr. Betty Shabazz Delta Academy and the Delta Growing and Empowering Myself Successfully (GEMS).

Youth members in the program put together the care packages to get a hands-on perspective on philanthropy.

While the project is meant to teach youth to give back to others, there are other additional lessons that the sorority hopes the youth take away from this project.

“This endeavor is not just about providing aid; it’s about fostering awareness and empathy,” per a statement from the Delta Sigma Theta CAAC chapter. “By participating in this project, our youth gained firsthand insight into the challenges faced by the unhoused in our community. This was an opportunity for them to confront realities they might not have been fully aware of, yet which profoundly impact the lives of others within our community.”

When looking at the history of Delta Sigma Theta, the crimson and cream sorority was founded on Jan. 13, 1913, by 22 women at Howard University. The sorority has since grown to over 300,000 members, with over 1,000 chapters worldwide.

The CAAC was established as the 1,034th chapter on April 12, 2014, with 75 members.

In the last three months alone, the chapter has conducted three other events under its unsheltered project.

In December 2023, the sisterhood held the Crimson Tree Holiday Gift Project in conjunction with the Newton County School System (NCSS). The program provided gifts from participants’ wish lists for 100 elementary and middle school students who were identified through the McKinney-Vento homeless assistance act.

In January, they once again partnered with NCSS as well as Our Best Laundry to provide a free laundry day and laundry care baskets to 13 families in need as part of the MLK Day of Service.

And in February, the sorority provided four full sponsorships of $400 each and three partial sponsorships of $100 each for local high school students to participate in a college tour spanning campuses in Georgia and Tennessee as part of their “Next Level College Tour.”

In just a few months, the chapter will hit their 10th anniversary – a big milestone for the local chapter.

But whether it be one year, 10 years or 100 years, the mission will always remain the same for the sisterhood, and that is to provide a positive impact on the community.

“It is extremely important. We are a sorority based on community initiatives [and] supporting our community,” Hutchinson said. “So it’s very important for us to give back to our community and do service projects like this.”