The Gamma Phi chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma follows the Fraternity's three-part philanthropy model. We focus our philanthropic and community service outreach in the following three areas:
Sometimes our own members are the ones in need, so that’s why the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation, a charitable 501(c)(3) organization, was created. The Gamma Phi Chapter supports the Foundation and works to advance its goal of empowering inspired women. The mission of the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation is to support the lifetime development of women through the funding of educational programs, scholarships, financial aid, and the preservation of Kappa heritage. Whether it’s a scholarship to help a young woman complete her education or an emergency grant in a time of crisis, the Foundation helps Kappas when they need it most.
We join sisters across the continent to support Kappa's philanthropy, Reading Is Fundamental (RIF). Each year, Kappa Kappa Gamma donates thousands of books to elementary schools, hospitals, and Boys and Girls Clubs across the continent. Together, Kappa and RIF help young children discover the joys of reading, in an effort to build a more literate nation. Our chapter contributes by hosting book drives, most recently during SMU Parents Weekend in the fall.
The Gamma Phi chapter also supports an international nonprofit organization that is still close to home, the Akola Project. In 2004, our very own alumna Brittany Merrill Underwood started The Akola Project as a sophomore Kappa at SMU. Using a sustainable impact model that Brittany developed, the nonprofit trains and employs women in Uganda to create beautiful handmade jewelry pieces. The women named it “Akola”, which means “to work” in their local dialect. Akola is proud to be a 100% impact brand, creating a social impact throughout the entire supply chain and empowering women across the globe.
"The hope of Akola is to encourage new thinking about international development and to inspire the next generation of social innovators to deliver the highest level of impact in disadvantaged communities."
–Brittany Merrill Underwood
Our chapter hosts philanthropy events throughout the year to support the Akola Project. The Holiday Bazaar Additionally, we dedicate Philanthropy Day during Recruitment to the Akola Project: we create bracelets from hand-rolled paper beads, share the mission of Akola with Potential New Members, and play a video produced by one of our members that features Kappas volunteering and making a difference in Uganda. Each summer, a group of SMU Kappas travels to Uganda as part of the annual "Experience Akola" empowerment program.
In addition to chapter-sponsored philanthropy events—such as our annual Holiday Bazaar and our service projects with the brothers of Pi Kappa Alpha each semester—we support local campus and community service projects. Our members enjoy attending philanthropy events hosted by other sororities and fraternities on campus. We also participate in Relay for Life benefitting the American Cancer Society by making a chapter team every spring. Last year, the Kappa Team fundraised $6,000+ overall and had the most team members out of 42 participating teams! This year, our chapter also enjoyed participating in SMU's first Dance Marathon benefitting Children's Miracle Network. We continue to get involved with local Dallas philanthropies, such as Habitat for Humanity and the Heart House, and every active member contributes at least three hours of community service each semester