Chapter News

This is a public blog featuring news and announcements concerning Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter.  The content on this page is read-only.  For more information about Theta Epsilon Omega, please e-mail

  • 02 Feb 2013 2:33 PM | Anonymous

    It's been a long tradition for the women of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. to wear the colors pink and green, but on National Wear Red Day, Friday, February 1, 2013, we joined millions of Americans in the fight against heart disease in women by wearing RED

    Heart disease is still the number one killer of women, taking the life of one in three women each year.  This is especially important for African-American women, who have an increased risk due to factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity and diabetes.

    Click the image to view photos of Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter members wearing RED.  We thank you for your support of this initiative and hope to see you next year.

    For more information about National Wear Red Day, visit

  • 25 Jan 2013 2:54 PM | Anonymous

    Annual Martin Luther King Conference Saturday in New Haven

    NEW HAVEN - The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Conference will hold its annual community meeting from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Wexler-Grant School, 55 Foote St.

    “Visions of the Dream” is the theme for this year’s conference, which was chosen by organizers to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the “I Have a Dream “ speech, which King delivered at the Lincoln Memorial in 1963.

    “We are excited about the conference and usually hold the conference on the federal holiday, but due to the presidential inauguration we had to schedule the event for Saturday,” said conference Chairwoman [Member of Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter] Sondi Jackson.

    “The comprehensive conference is a collaboration of civic, fraternal, religious and community organizations from the Greater New Haven area for the purpose of reflecting on the past while seeking the promise of tomorrow,” Jackson said.

    For more information, call Jackson at 203 494-1635.

    Contact Shahid Abdul-Karim at 203 789-5614.

  • 27 Nov 2012 8:29 PM | Anonymous

    New Haven Food Truck honored by Alpha Kappa Alpha for efforts to fight poverty

    Submitted by Cara Rosner on November 2, 2012 - 1:22pm


    We are honored and proud to share that one of our Women’s Initiative’s signature projects, the New Haven Food Truck, has been recognized by [Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter] with its Global Poverty Leadership Award.

    The food truck, which recently completed its second summer on the road, delivers free meals to New Haven youths under age 18 during the summer, when those who rely on free meals during the school year are at risk of going hungry.

    This past summer the Food Truck, which runs in partnership with New Haven Public Schools, expanded to serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. It made stops at a total of 10 sites, serving two meals each day at every stop. One driver we spoke to in August said on a typical day he distributed about 70 breakfasts and between 180 and 190 lunches. The high demand for the Food Truck’s services shows that the need for it is great, and growing.

    Our Women’s Initiative members - passionate about childhood health, nutrition and hunger – were a driving force behind getting the Truck on city streets and have supported the initiative as it has grown.

    In presenting the Global Poverty Leadership Award to United Way for the food truck program, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority cited United Way “for sending a very strong message that every child deserves love, support, encouragement and a healthy meal.”

    Every four years, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority’s international president adopts a program that guides all of the sorority’s chapter efforts during the course of her term. The current president, Carolyn House-Stewart, is focusing the group’s 2010-2014 program on “Global Leadership Through Timeless Service.”

    Learn more about the Food Truck here.

    Link to original article

  • 05 Nov 2012 9:50 AM | Anonymous

    New Haven Register:  Published Sunday, November 4, 2012

    NEW HAVEN - In anticipation of Election Day on Tuesday the Greater New Haven NAACP Branch is encouraging city residents to “Get Out To Vote.”

    The organization will be staffing a phone bank to make calls starting from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday at the branch headquarters, located at 545 Whalley Ave.

    Neighborhood canvassing also will start from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday.

    “We are excited about Tuesday’s election and we are preparing to canvas our communities to let people know that voting affects every aspect of our human life,” said Doris Dumas, first vice president of the local branch and leading the GOTV campaign.

    With assistance from the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority [Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter], more than 525 new voters were registered in New Haven since January.

    Phone banking also will take place at the branch headquarters from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Election Day Tuesday, and rides will be offered to those need getting to the polls.

    Sunday’s canvas will target the Newhallville, Dixwell, Dwight and Fair Haven communities.

    “We are in need of more volunteers for the canvas, and as we get more volunteers we can expand our areas coverage and encourage more people to vote on Tuesday’s election,” Dumas said.

    Dumas also said the branch has solidified six volunteers as carpoolers to the polls and other volunteers are on standby if the number of people needing rides increase.

    With regard to concern about voter suppression concerns that have arisen in the country, Dumas said, “We have not seen or heard of any voter suppression in our areas, however we encourage people to contact the 1-866-OUR-VOTE number for any voting irregularities,”

    “People need to know when they go to the polls to remove candidate buttons, hats and cover up T-shirts, because you could be turned away,” she said. “We don’t want anything to stop us on Tuesday, our ancestors have fought and struggled for this basic right and when we don’t exercise this right we disrespect the dignity of our voice.”

    Display of such political material within 75 feet of a polling place is not permitted under state law.

    Contact Shahid Abdul-Karim at 203-789-5614. Follow him on Twitter @Shahid_Akarim

  • 03 Oct 2012 4:47 PM | Anonymous

    Published in The New Haven Register on October 3, 2012

    New Haven coalition launches series to register new voters

    By Shahid Abdul-Karim, Register Staff / Twitter: @Shahid_Akarim

    NEW HAVEN - The Elm City Communities/Housing Authority of New Haven has launched a series of non-partisan voter registration drives that will run until Oct. 30.

    “Your Vote Matters” is the title of the series and it will take place throughout the Housing Authority’s family developments in the city.

    “Elm City Communities is excited to launch the ‘Your Vote Matter’ series of voter registration drives for our residents,” said Housing Authority Executive Director Karen Dubois-Walton. “Along with our community partners we will be on the ground registering as many people as we can and letting them know that their vote is equally important in both a local and national scale.”

    Registration times for the events will be from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at these locations: Thursday, Quinnipiac Terrace; Oct. 11, Farnam Courts; Oct. 18, McConaughy Terrace; Oct. 25, Westville Manor; and Oct. 30 at Eastview Terrace.

    Rep. Gary Holder-Winfield, D-New Haven, said regarding the voting process that, “most folk only vote in presidential elections, not understanding or seeing the importance of voting in other local elections that affect their quality of life and the communities in which they live.”

    The series of events was created to educate and engage residents about the importance of the voting process. During each voter registration session a group of volunteers will canvas designated sites to register residents and speak one-on-one to answer questions and hand out educational materials about the election process.

    “All local organizations have been charged by their national offices to participate in voter registration. This has been our obligation and commitment to the community,” said Dori Dumas, vice president of the Greater New Haven NAACP branch [and member of Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter].

    Elm City Communities partnered with the NAACP, Delta Sigma Theta sorority, New Haven Family Alliance, The People’s Center, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority [Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter], Junta for Progressive Action, Fire Birds of New Haven and Omega Psi Phi fraternity for the events.

    To volunteer for any of the events, call Jasmin Franjul at 203-498-8800, ext. 1009.

  • 12 Sep 2012 9:33 AM | Anonymous

    September is Hunger Action Month - Speak Out Against Hunger!

    Nationwide, one in six Americans - including more than one in five children - struggle with hunger.

    Theta Epsilon Omega's Global Poverty Committee responded to these alarming facts by mobilizing members of the chapter and the community to wear the color orange on September 6, 2012 to speak out against hunger.  (click image to the left to view pictures)


    Because the nearly 49 million people in America who struggle with hunger often do so in silence.  They live in our communities; they are our neighbors, our co-workers, and our friends, yet their struggles with providing food for themselves and their families often go unheard.  By simply lending our voices, we expected to make a tangible contribution by mobilizing our community to do something - no matter how big or small - to end hunger. 

    To that end, the chapter's effort to end hunger does not stop at just wearing orange for a day. 

    Theta Epsilon Omega continues to advocate for the fight against hunger by partnering with organizations such as the Connecticut Food Bank.  In the Spring of 2012, the chapter participated in the Connecticut Food Bank's Walk Against Hunger and donated $1,060.00.

    The chapter's reach extends globally by supporting Heifer International, a world hunger organization that donates livestock to poor countries.  Throughout the year, both chapter members and its Emerging Young Leaders participate in fun and unique fundraising activities to benefit Heifer International. 

    Other hunger-focused community programs that the chapter is currently involved in include:  volunteering at the Community Soup Kitchen; organizing a food drive to benefit FISH New Haven; and adopting families to receive gift cards to Elm City Market, a local grocery store that stocks healthy foods, including many sustainable and organic food options.

    Theta Epsilon Omega wants you to continue to adovocate for those who struggle to keep food on the table by educating yourself, your friends and family about the problem of hunger in our communities.  For more information on how you can help, please e-mail

  • 10 Apr 2012 2:57 PM | Anonymous

    The African-American Women's Summit is a content-rich networking event inspiring women in business, leadership and life.  It is where women of all ages unite to share and exchange experiences; encourage each other in growing their businesses and leadership abilities; and increase their access to powerful information. 

    The 17th Annual African-American Women's Summit - Strong Women Rising - held on March 24, 2012 certainly accomplished its purpose as it brought together over 300 women leaders, trail blazers, business owners, dreamers and doers.  The Summit co-chairman was Evelyn Streater-Frizzle who is a member of Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter. 

    The Summit included over 24 vendors and informational booths.  Members of Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter staffed one of those informational booths by offering voter registration and voter education information to the Summit attendees.  Theta Epsilon Omega also encouraged attendees to sign its Go Green Pledge, an activity of the chapter's Global Poverty Committee.  By signing the Go Green Pledge, participants promised to turn off all non-essential electrical appliances and lights for one-hour on Earth Day, March 31, 2012, to preserve the Earth's natural environment. 

    The young women enrolled in the chapter's Emerging Young Leaders Program participated in the Summit's first youth form, Developing Strong Youth, and several program committees of Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter also contributed to the Summit by organizing informational workshops. 

  • 04 Apr 2012 12:46 PM | Anonymous

    Theta Epsilon Omega announced the 2012 Emma Ruff Essay Contest winners at the James Hillhouse High School Black History Assembly on February 29, 2012.  This is the 14th year the chapter has partnered with the high school and sponsored the essay contest, which is named after New Haven's first African-American teacher and Connecticut's first female high school principal. 

    Entrants were asked to submit an original essay that was expected to be insightful and creative, among other things, on the question:  "Are administrators, teachers, and parents solely responsible for addressing bullying, or should students be held responsible and accountable for its eradication?"

    President Nicole Murphy presented the essay contest winners with a monetary gift and certificate of excellence.  The chapter also presented the high school's English Department with a certificate of appreciation for their ongoing support and encouragement of the youth who participate in the Emma Ruff Essay Contest each year. 

    Several members of Theta Epsilon Omega were present, including Pia Grasty, Co-Chairman of the chapter's Scholarship Committee.  The Scholarship Committee recently announced the chapter's four-year scholarship available to high school seniors who reside in Greater New Haven.  Scholarship applications are due Friday, April 13, 2012.

  • 17 Jan 2012 1:34 PM | Anonymous

    Martin Luther King conference in New Haven focuses on education, service

    Monday, January 16, 2012

    By Abbe Smith, Register Staff / Twitter: @abbegsmith

    NEW HAVEN - Hundreds of people gathered at Wexler-Grant School Monday to honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. and to engage in community building through education and service.

    More than 200 volunteers came out for the annual Martin Luther King conference, a decades-old tribute event that features music, free food, civil rights reflections, raffles and workshops for students, families and community members. The event was organized by [Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.] and Omega Psi Phi fraternity, with help from the school district and numerous nonprofits, and donations from businesses.

    “It’s important to maintain tradition and history and, more importantly, to celebrate this day by giving back to the community,” said Sondi Jackson, one of the lead organizers of the conference and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha.

    She said the purpose of the workshops is to “uplift the community” and inspire people to think about the world around them.

    United Way of Greater New Haven helped recruit volunteers for the event, which featured remarks from state Comptroller Kevin Lembo, Wexler-Grant Principal Sabrina Breland and Ward 22 Alderwoman Jeanette Morrison. The Rev. Brian Bellamy of Friendship Missionary Baptist Church gave the keynote address.

    The workshops cater to different age groups. Programs for kindergarten through second grade students included storytelling about the Civil Rights Movement, fire safety, African dance and drumming. Kids in third through fifth grades got to try beading, dramatic arts and line dancing. Middle schoolers learned about bullying, self-esteem and planning for the future. High school students joined health discussions, learned about Internet safety and heard about the New Haven Promise college scholarship program.

    Adult offerings included workshops on education topics such as the life of Rosa Parks, but also featured practical discussions about starting a business, navigating break-ups or divorce, estate and funeral planning, mental health treatments and weight loss.

    In a workshop for young children about King’s legacy, Al Lucas, director of the city’s Office of Legislative Services, urged kids to remember the civil rights leader’s life and dream of a better world, rather than focusing on his assassination. He told students about King’s dedication to Gandhi’s principles of nonviolence and his use of civil disobedience to fight racism and effect change. And Lucas reminded students that King was once a kid just like them.

    “What do you want to be when you grow up,” he asked the kids. Hands shot up and students vowed to be presidents, teachers, toy makers and principals.

    In another room, youth mentor Timothy Brown engaged middle schoolers in discussion about King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech. He asked students if they think King’s “dream” for justice and equality has been realized. Jasmine Brown, a student at Elm City College Preparatory School and one of 200 volunteers at the conference, answered “no.”

    “That is not what’s going on right now,” she said, adding she believes society is moving closer to King’s vision of equality.

    While some of the workshops focused on King, others addressed practical issues and served to solve problems facing youth and adults. High school students learned about budgeting basics from presenter Terrence Jennings. Merieta Bayati, owner of the Girlie Girl Shop in New Haven, talked to a group of women about starting their own business and being successful even in a bad economy.

    “It’s all about how you carry yourself. You have to believe in yourself,” she said.

  • 25 Nov 2011 9:41 PM | Anonymous

    Did you know that since 2000, over 200 people on death row have been exonerated due to new evidence confirming their innocence? 

    In the wake of Troy Davis, who was recently executed by the State of Georgia despite strong questions about his innocence, people nationwide are engaged in heated public debate on the inequities and failures of the death penalty.  Even in Connecticut, where in just three months the state legislature will vote on whether to abolish the death penalty, there are many citizens voicing their concerns and hoping their state senators will take them into account. 

    On November 22, 2011, Theta Epsilon Omega Chapter was the lead sponsor of A Community Discussion on the Death Penalty at Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church in Hamden, Connecticut.  The chapter joined with other organizations and concerned citizens to discuss the impact of the death penalty on our communities.  The event represented an important effort for Theta Epsilon Omega to take the lead in promoting greater community engagement with important challenges we face. 

    The panel discussion included Kimberly Davis, sister of Troy Davis; Lumumba Akinwole-Bandele, Senior Community Engagement Advocate with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund; Victoria Coward whose son was murdered in New Haven in 2007; and Representative Gary Holder-Winfield (D-New Haven).  The event was moderated by Superior Court Judge John Turner.

    Other sponsors of the event were The Connecticut State Conference of NAACP Branches; The Greater New Haven Branch of the NAACP; WYBC 94.3 FM Radio; the ACLU of Connecticut; and the Connecticut Network to Abolish the Death Penalty.

    Special thanks to Dr. Khalilah L. Brown-Dean, Theta Epsilon Omega's First Vice President, for spearheading the panel discussion, and to the chapter's Social Justice and Human Rights Committee for coordinating the volunteers.

    Play highlights of the community discussion here.


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