Sisters raise awareness

The sisters of Zeta Phi Beta represented the College Sunday morning at the annual March of Dimes Mercer County WalkAmerica at Mercer County Park.

Zeta Phi Beta participates in the five-mile walk, which focuses on awareness and prevention of premature birth, every year.

Also walking with Zeta Phi Beta were members of Epsilon Xi Zeta, the grad chapter of the sorority, and members of Phi Beta Sigma, Zeta Phi Beta’s fraternity brothers, as well as other students.

Zeta Phi Beta’s Archonettes also participated. The Archonettes are an auxiliary group of girls from high school, ages 14 to 18, who participate in community service events with Zeta Phi Beta and are managed by the grad chapter.

N.J. Congressman Rush Holt was in attendance and gave a speech that started off the walk.

“Families’ dreams are realized here,” he said. “They have healthy children who grow into strong adults. It’s great to see you all out here.”

According to Joycelyn Oppong, a sister of the sorority and coordinator of the WalkAmerica event, the Zeta Phi Beta team raised money by tabling in Brower Student Center in March and collecting online donations.

Oppong was happy with the money raised by the team but hopes to raise even more for next year.

Participants were happy to be walking for community service.

“I love kids, I love babies,” Marylyn Dumornay, a freshman participant, said. “I believe that if my child had a problem I would want all these people to support them too. That’s a beautiful thing.”

Evette Barnes, a freshman walker, said she was not sure of her individual impact, but that together she knew the walkers could make a difference.

“I know children who have died of premature birth,” she said. “It’s inspirational to see a bunch of people come together for a cause.”