Dressed in crimson suit jackets and striped ties and bowties, five members of the Frederick Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi (KAP) fraternity brought in boxes of school supplies Wednesday afternoon to Spring Ridge Elementary School.
The local fraternity chapter organized a collection as part of one of its larger social action projects.
Spring Ridge Elementary’s principal, DeVada Coley, was there to greet the men in the cafeteria.
“Donations such as this have allowed us to keep our supply lists low and make sure that all of our students and our teachers have the materials that they need,” Coley said.
Richard Holley, a member of KAP, said the larger objective of the project was to support a school. Another member suggested Spring Ridge, and they then spent one day collecting supplies at an event with other local alumni chapters from around Maryland.
The supplies donated to Spring Ridge will help both students and teachers, Holley said. Among the boxes were crayons, pencils, tissues, composition books, sandwich bags and backpacks.
Kappa Alpha Psi is a collegiate fraternity with a predominantly African-American membership. It was founded in 1911 at Indiana University Bloomington. The Frederick Alumni chapter was established in 1982.
Holley said one of main missions of the fraternity is to serve, and projects such as the supply collection and donation allow them to continue that mission.
“[The fraternity] is built on service to others, and so that’s what we want to keep going, especially here in Frederick County, because we know there are a lot of underserved individuals,” Holley said.
Coley agreed, saying that even though Spring Ridge hasn’t been considered a Title 1 school for two years, a third of its students still qualify for free and reduced-price meals.
“We still have a large population of students in need ... and school supplies can be quite costly,” Coley said. “With the support of the community ... it just makes it so that families can spend their money in another way.”
Both Coley and Holley said they hope to continue the partnership.
“One of our objectives ... is to be active in the community,” Holley said. “So it does us good, letting everyone know that we are here and available to support them in any way we can. All they have to do is reach out.”
Now that the supplies have been delivered to Spring Ridge, Coley said they will be sorted by the school’s community liaison and distributed to those in need.
“I’ve already talked to the teachers. If they have a child coming in that doesn’t have something, they will automatically get a backpack with the supplies and the things that they need,” Coley said. “No child will go without.”