Philanthropy is a large part of sorority membership. Giving back to local communities as well as inter/national organizations helps shape sorority women into caring and compassionate individuals. And, Circle of Sisterhood is one organization many sorority women work with to make a difference in the lives of millions of girls and women around the world.
Not even 7% of the world (men & women combined) have college degrees
2/3 of illiterate adults are women
66 million girls are out of school
Circle of Sisterhood was founded in 2010 by Ginny Carroll after being inspired by the best-selling book, Half the Sky, which focuses on women’s education around the globe. Carroll, a sorority woman herself, knew sorority women were the catalyst to have a global impact on women’s education because philanthropy is such a large component of the sorority experience. She also knew sorority women recognized the value of education and hoped they would have the drive to give that experience to others.
Carroll’s dream came to fruition as thousands of sorority women stood by her and helped raise funds to build universities and send young girls to school for the first time. Nearly 10 years after the founding of Circle of Sisterhood more than $1,000,000 has been granted to organizations in 24 countries! Schools are being built around the world with many College Panhellenics sending sorority members to aid in the construction.
Over $1,000,000 has been granted
23 schools built in Malawi, Senegal, Haiti, Nepal and Nicaragua
During the summer of 2018, one College Panhellenic, Indiana University Bloomington, took a trek to the southeastern African nation of Malawi. The students stayed in Kasiya Village which is home to a population of around 450. The closest school to the village is a 5km walk and was over capacity with 855 students who came from many villages to attend the school. At the current school, there are six teachers trying to teach eight grade levels in overcrowded classrooms.
These conditions are not uncommon and that is why students travel to assist in the building of new schools. The students from IU helped with the groundbreaking of a new school which included carrying materials, mixing and pouring concrete for the foundation of the school. This new school provides enough room for three grades to have a permanent location. Additional teachers will be brought to the new school ready to teach children who are eager to learn.
“This new school build brings in new resources and greater access to education, which will in turn provide greater support to students so that they can continue to progress to the next standard, and ultimately pass their comprehensive exams.”Alexis Karwoski – Indiana University Assistant Director of Sorority and Fraternity Life
In addition to building a school in areas that have an education deficiency the students who attend treks such as this one get to connect with the community. One student, Kate Uchal who served as the Panhellenic Vice President of Personal Development, stated that talking with the students of Kasiya had the greatest impact on her. “Many girls begin to told us what career they aspired to have; I began to cry when I started to hear their dreams of becoming doctors, pilots, nurses, and teachers,” Kate says. “The limited opportunity for education in Malawi makes it difficult for girls and women to chase their dreams and I really don’t think that it is fair.”
Sorority women like Kate are making a difference around the world. The good news is that you can still get involved! Just $1 can provide a girl with a notebook and pencil and only $53 can pay for everything she needs for one whole year of school including supplies, uniforms, lunch and more. Your small donations can have a large impact so that about how your campus can participate today!
Circle of Sisterhood exists to make the world a better place and to help make a better life for women and girls around the world. Sorority women collectively have the power to make a change and that is what Ginny Carroll knew when she founded Circle of Sisterhood.