Project Reassurance is one of Sigma Gamma Rho’s eight national projects, which began as an effort to give financial and emotional support for expecting teen mothers. Recently, it has grown into a larger mission that includes promoting good health for all ages and genders.
According to the Project Reassurance, the concern now is “Physical Health, Mental Health, Safe Communities, Protecting the Future.” At the center of the program are the H3’s; Healthy Choices, Healthy Living, for Healthy Generations. The idea is to educate people about health, so that they can make the best decisions toward living a healthy lifestyle and then in turn they will pass the knowledge and habits to their children.
The Beta Pi Chapter at Arizona State University focused on “Healthy Choices” for their Project Reassurance event Saturday. Since the event was held at umom, a shelter for homeless women and children in Phoenix, the ladies of Beta Pi decided that the best way to help support these women would be to instill more power within them through education. Many women within the shelter may feel helpless because of their situation, so the Beta Pi Chapter wanted to give them some control over choices they can make to elevate themselves.
The Officer Chief for Women’s Health at the Arizona Department of Health Services, Antoinette Means, spoke at the event about the latest health information concerning mothers and expectant mothers. Means urged the importance of a continued healthy lifestyle because when women become pregnant, past choices in poor health can affect a child, even if the mother receives prenatal care. Also, she addressed third-hand smoking, saying that studies have shown smokers leave residue on things they touch, and when a third party comes into contact with it, like a child, their health is at risk.
The second speaker, a private-practice physician Dr. Hollis Underwood, gave the women affirmations on what they could do to relieve stress and build self-esteem.
Each woman received a healthy gift bag from the Beta Pi Chapter, filled with personal care products with hopes of improving their emotional health by building their self-image.
Umom Parents Anonymous Facilitator Life Skills Coordinator Denise Shields wrote in an e-mail to Beta Pi after the event saying, “I just wanted to personally extend another ‘THANK YOU’ for such a kind heart.” Shield continued the e-mail, asking for the program to become an annual event at umom.
Beta Pi plans to make the event even larger next year so more women and children can be included.
Divine Nine Sororities and Fraternities were founded on Christian principles. However, members of Black Letter Organizations reflect all faiths and it should be noted that we are accepting of an array of religions.
The Beta Psi Chapter of Iota Phi Theta at Arizona State University held a forum on “Muslims in America” to educate attendees on the teachings of the Qur’an. A main discussion point was the recent media events concerning the threatened burning of the Qu’ran and building of the community center near Ground Zero.
The President of the Beta Psi Chapter, Antione Jones is a reverted Muslim. Jones made his declaration to the Mosque last year. Jones said in the presentation on Tuesday that he proclaimed to the mosque “Allah was the only God,” by reciting a prayer in Arabic. Jones went through the basic teachings and five principles, as well as answering any questions candidly that audience members had.
Jones explained that Islam is a faith that accepts all people, as it was created as a religion for humanity. As explained by Jones, as long as a person feels that Allah (the name in Arabic for God) is the only God, then they are considered Muslim.
During the question and answer portion the Ground Zero mosque was brought up and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. member LatTina Rencher said that she felt the community center should be built, and those who have a problem with its construction, because they fear terrorism, should make an effort to learn about Islam. Rencher felt that those who attacked the World Trade Center where not a true reflection of Islam.
Rencher makes a good point in that it is education that should be stressed in the the Ground Zero Mosque debate, as well as the burning of the Qur’an. That is where Black Letter Organizations step in and fill the void that the media leaves open.
Iota Phi Theta saw that these two issues where being covered without explaining what the faith of Islam is really about, and took the initiative to educate those around them who wanted to understand.