Alpha Xi Delta raises autism awareness throughout April

By Logan Arneson, Contributing Writer
The sorority Alpha Xi Delta has planned multiple events throughout the month of April to spread autism awareness on the hilltop. These girls have come together to set up fundraisers at local restaurants, campus gatherings, snow cone sales, tie-dying shirts and a flag football contest to raise money.

Sorority president, Hannah Guidish, and the head of philanthropy chair, Fallyn Yonish, are part of the main group to set up these charitable events. As the president, Gudish feels great being able to guide this group of girls to serve their community, “I am so humbled and excited to be leading such a caring and hardworking group of women,” she said.
So far this month, they have hosted a “Dine to Donate” event at the Texas Roadhouse in the Highlands on April 2, also known as World Autism Day, held Light it Up Blue Night here on campus on April 3 hosted by WLU President Stephen Greiner, and another “Dine to Donate” event on April 14 at Tudors in Weirton, W. Va. 
At the Texas Roadhouse event, 10 percent of each customer’s total went to the Autism Speaks fundraiser. The sorority also did a bake sale and raffle basket to auction off prizes.
At the Light it Up Blue Night, the girls passed out blue glow sticks, blue necklaces and free snacks for everyone who stopped by. They also lit up the breezeway and a few trees with blue lights for Autism awareness.
On Monday, April 23, Texas Roadhouse will host an autism spectrum night, and Alpha Xi Delta will be in attendance to help pass out flyers and speak on autism awareness to customers.
Their final event will be a flag football tournament with teams formed by students here at West Liberty. Their fourth annual “Football Frenxi” on April 26 will consist of a girls bracket and a boys bracket. The winners of each tournament will receive a grand prize.
Other people who come to watch the games can participate in a raffle basket, along with indulging in the concession stand being run by Alpha Xi Delta.
This football tournament has always been the biggest part of their Autism Awareness Month fundraisers. It is $5 per player with teams of six, and Guidish hopes to have 15 teams sign up and donate for the cause.
Yonish also loves putting together these charitable events, “I absolutely love it! I love giving back and raising money for Autism Speaks,” she said. Yonish has big plans for the sorority’s future, looking to raise money for many types of organizations.
Yonish is an elementary education major and special education minor, she wants to be a special education teacher. “Ever since I was little, I wanted to give back and make a difference in people’s lives, and being in Alpha Xi Delta helps me do that,” Yonish said.
Other members of the sorority also enjoy putting together these charitable events for their school and community. New Alpha Xi Delta member and freshman Harley Cecil loves collecting money for autism and that she can be apart of a caring sorority. 
“It feels great being a part of something so awesome because we do little donation events all month. These events may not seem like much but it brings in a good profit,” Cecil said.
Come out to these events and help a good cause to spread Autism awareness. Alpha Xi Delta is giving back to their community, and you can play a part by helping out and donating.
Photo Credit: Alpha Xi Delta