"Human Service" is the motto of Acacia Fraternity. Each year, the fraternity holds unique philanthropic events to benefit the Shriner’s Burn Hospitals, which provide free hospitalization and care to children whose families can not afford their treatment, as well as other charities. Listed below are the philanthropies we do throughout the year.
Acacia Claus Toy Drive
Each year during the holiday season, Acacia chapters around the country collect new, unwrapped toys for children who might otherwise not receive presents. Dubbed Acacia Claus, this annual toy drive is designed to assist local organizations in our chapters' communities. Chapters are encouraged to put their own personal spin on the event; which often involves partnering with local retailers to solicit donations of toys or money from residents and customers.
This worthwhile event has not only brightened the lives of countless families in need, it has also provided our brotherhood with an opportunity to show the communities in which we reside that Acacia's "Human Service" focus is more than just lip service. It is a passion that drives and motivates our brothers in every aspect of their lives.
Acacia takes part in several community service projects throughout the year:
Our members are encouraged to participate in a variety of volunteer service activities. We have an Acacia team for Relay for Life in the spring where we were the top Greek money raising team and second place team overall. We also are the first fraternity at Iowa State University to be honored as an Outstanding Volunteer Group of Story County for the year 2010. This award was given to us based on our involvement in several organizations in the Ames community. For fall 2011, 75% of our chapter participated in Greeks Give Back weekend, where our chapter drove to the town of Maxwell, Iowa, to scrape paint off of houses for a city beautification project. In April 2012, several members traveled to Des Moines to help build a compost bin and fence for a church garden where all of the crops are donated to local food pantries.
We have a permanent relationship with FreeStore Inc. of Des Moines and Ames Repair and Care. FreeStore Inc. is an organization that donates furniture and other household items to families in need. These families are taken to their warehouse in Des Moines to pick out whatever they need for their new dwelling and then a truck hauls the items to the dwelling. When the family is in Ames, FreeStore calls upon our chapter to help move the items into the house or apartment. With Ames Repair and Care, our members have helped mow lawns for folks in Ames who have disabilities and cannot mow themselves. We also helped shovel driveways for three households in the winter of 2011-2012.
New partnership with YSS!
Since 2004, Acacia Fraternity has run a semesterly used-textbook drive. These textbooks are collected from around campus and the Greek community and then shipped to underfunded universities and libraries in Africa. With the increase of rental textbooks and e-books, however, we are now partnering with Youth and Shelter Services to help sponsor and run a 5K run/walk in November. We will also participate in donation drives and encourage members to take part in GRIP mentoring with the kids at the shelter. We look forward to this great relationship with a great organization!