We are lucky to have the local chapter for Phi Theta Kappa at the Savannah Tech Campus here in Hinesville. This service-oriented group is working hard to make a difference at the campus, in our community, and in the world.
I am fortunate because they have partnered with Keep Liberty Beautiful to support our goals of litter prevention education, waste reduction and recycling, and community improvement and beautification. Keep America Beautiful, Inc., the nation's largest nonprofit community improvement organization, and Phi Theta Kappa, the largest honor society in American higher education, have joined forces during the past couple of years to improve communities through a variety of education, awareness, recycling, beautification and clean community projects.
Phi Theta Kappa serves colleges in all 50 of the United States, U.S. territories, Canada, Germany, the British Virgin Islands and islands in the Pacific Rim. Approximately 100,000 students are inducted annually into the society's 1,200 chapters.
Locally, the chapter has more than 100 members at the area Savannah Tech campuses. The local chapter is headed President Karen Bell, a student at Savannah Tech. Karen is a human dynamo with loads of energy, creativity and a desire to make a difference. She also has a quirky sense of humor which shows up in her costumed character, ‘Ms Think.’
Karen assumes her role as Ms. Think to create interest on campus in some of the projects that Phi Theta Kappa is leading. Their logo is ‘Unlock your Mind to the Possibility’.
This is a busy group. In addition to collecting cell phones for recycling, working on a food drive for nonperishable goods and leading a collection drive for used crayons for our world’s largest crayon project, the group leads a collection drive for Better World Books.
Better World Books recycles college textbooks (no older than five years) to reuse in literacy programs in the United States and throughout the world. Better World Books is a unique global bookstore that harnesses the power of capitalism to bring literacy and opportunity to people around the world — a pretty hefty mission for a company that was started by three college students just a few years ago.
Since 2002, the organization has collected more than 11.4 million books through active book drives at more than 1,600 colleges and universities and more than 900 libraries. Better World Books also has raised more than $2.8 million dollars for more than 80 literacy and education nonprofit organizations.
While working toward these accomplishments, the group diverted 6,500 tons of books from landfills. The three young men who began this organization realized they could give new life and purpose to books that had been viewed as waste.
Karen and her crew have a collection box on the Savannah Tech campus for books. Any college textbooks no older than five years may be dropped off for use in this program. All of the books collected locally will be used in literacy programs in the United States.
Thank you, Karen and all of the other students involved in this Phi Theta Kappa chapter. We are proud to partner with you and the wonderful work you are doing.
Upcoming Keep Liberty Beautiful projects that need your involvement:
• Third quarter nominations are being accepted through Sept. 30 for Win-dex Attractive Business Awards. For information, call 368-4888.
• Oct. 25: Rivers Alive in Liberty County. Volunteers are needed.
• October: Coastal Living/Cottage Living Holiday House, loaded with ideas for holiday decorating and living green. Tours begin in October and proceeds will benefit the United Way.
• Oct. 25: Munchkin scarecrow contest at the Community Fall Festival. Help us collect kids’ clothes for this fun, pint-sized event.
• Liberty County: Home of the world’s largest crayon. Please help us make this Guinness Book of World Records project a reality by calling 368-4888 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We have more than 800 pounds of crayons now, but need even more to create a giant crayon this fall.
For more information on Keep Liberty County Beautiful programs, contact Sara Ann Swida at 368-4888 or email@example.com.