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Sorority gives basics to those in need

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POTSDAM - A Clarkson University sorority started collecting items for those in need last semester, and even as many students went home for the summer the program continues to grow.

The students of Kappa Delta Chi collect clothing, diapers, toothpaste and other household goods, then distribute them to low-income community members who come to Trinity Church at 7 Maple St., Potsdam, on the last Saturday of every month, from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

“It is really something the area needs, and nobody has done it yet,” said Kappa Delta Chi member Rachel A. Skavina.

Turnout varies, but the number of people seeking donations has been on the rise, Skavina said. The sorority keeps a list of 32 regular visitors and the items they need.

“More and more people are getting the word,” she said.

Potsdam’s Shirley A. Powers comes every time, picking up a large assortment of items, some for herself, many to distribute to other families she knows.

“This does help me out a lot,” Ms. Powers said.

Most of the sorority sisters left the north country for the summer, but a small handful of those who live locally or who decided to stay in town over break have continued to keep the program moving.

Many college students are not aware of the need in the area, Skavina said.

“We’re here for the semester, so you never really see the poverty,” she said.

The service sorority’s monthly events have given those students a chance to get involved.

“I’ve never really done anything that directly made a difference like this project,” said Becky M. Florent, a student from Hampton, New Hampshire who is staying in the area over the summer to do research.

Kappa Delta Chi collects donations of clothing, hygiene items and household goods in boxes at several offices around the Clarkson campus, as well as Trinity Church and the Canton Social Services office.

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