Delta Zeta raises money at Hike for Hearing

Brittney Prather

Kent State Delta Zeta’s philanthropy, Hike for Hearing, set out to raise money for the speech and hearing impaired on Saturday at Towner’s Woods.

Hike for Hearing is one of the philanthropy events that DZ puts on every academic year. This event takes place during the fall semester.

At the hike, there were two different trails: Trick-Or-Treat Trail and Fright Hike. Both were family-friendly.

DZ put its efforts toward reaching past campus Greek life and into the surrounding communities. There was a trail leading up to DZ’s photo booth, and different activities that were around the trails. In addition to this, there was face painting and pumpkin painting, along with family friendly activities. Admission came with a snack voucher.

Though there were several stations, among the most popular was the Trick-Or-Treat Trail. There were members of DZ with candy, and in order for others to get candy, they needed to communicate in sign language.

“So when people came around to the Trick-Or-Treat trail, I would stop them and say ‘hey, just so you know our philanthropy is speech and hearing, and I’d say ‘because we are speech and hearing, you have to ask for candy by using ASL’ and then I would teach them,” said sophomore pre-nursing major Joanna Malson. “I taught them how to say ‘candy, trick-or-treat, thank you’ or if they didn’t want candy, I told them they can just say ‘Happy Halloween.’”

Although speech and hearing is DZ’s philanthropy, it does not mean that the members speak or know everything about American Sign Language (ASL).

“I’m actually a nursing major. I just would watch videos online and stuff to learn how to do it. What was actually cool was (there were) speech pathology majors who came by who knew ASL, and I was like ‘Am I doing it right?’ they were like ‘Yeah it looks good.’” Malson said.

Mentioned in a previous KentwWired.com article, junior psychology major and vice president of philanthropy Kalie Rogers said, “We raised around $4,000 last year. Ideally we hope to raise more than that, but decided to not put a value on it, because we really just want to focus on the sentimental value of why we’re there and we feel as if the rest will fall into place.”

From the event this year, DZ raised about $4,200 in donations.

The money raised will be going to the Starkey Hearing Foundation and Gallaudet University. Starkey Hearing Foundation gives hearing aides to those who cannot afford them.

“We try to raise the most money and help these people that can’t buy hearing aids or buy cochlear implants, so this is very important to us,” said senior public relations major Amy Kessler, a DZ member.

Kalie Rogers, the coordinator of the event, is said to have put her heart and soul into this event.

“For her, she’s probably been working on it for a year or so,” Kessler said of Rogers. “She’s definitely put her heart and soul into this and I’m just so excited for it and I’m so proud she’s put this much time in. Nobody I’ve ever seen in my four years of being a DZ has ever put in this much time into anything … it’s really cool to see her start from the bottom and now, it’s just this whole thing.”

All of the ideas that Rogers had set out for really came together, she thought.

“There were a couple of kinks but we’ve been working them out along the way. I feel like everyone’s enjoying themselves,” Rogers said. “We really tried to change a lot from last year, and that in itself is really huge accomplishment because I feel like it’s been so much more fun this year so that was really exciting.”

Although volunteering for community service can often be time consuming, many find that afterwards, it is a rewarding experience.

“I am so excited that I get to be a part of something that is more than me. It’s kind of cheesy, but it’s true,” Kessler said. “If we can watch Netflix for hours I think we can definitely put community service as a top priority.”

Contact Brittney Prather at [email protected]