Indiana Governor Michael Pence has proclaimed Feb. 16-22 as Tri Kappa Week.
Tri Kappa is an Indiana philanthropic organization for women that promotes charity, culture and education. Founded by seven young women Feb. 22, 1901, the service sorority has grown to nearly 10,000 members contributing $1.5 million yearly to local and state projects.
There are 260 chapters in 12 provinces. Locally, chapters thrive in Crown Point, Dyer-Schererville-St. John, Gary, Griffith, Hammond, Hobart, Lowell, Munster-Highland, Chesterton, Portage and Valparaiso.
Historically, Tri Kappa purchased an ambulance for the Red Cross during WWI, raised funds to purchase iron lungs during the polio crisis, and joined the USO, raised money for war bonds, held blood drives and staffed canteens during WWII.
Today, Tri Kappa members work to fund scholarships, donate to schools and the arts, and host cultural events.
Each chapter has unique ways of raising funds. The Dyer-Schererville-St. John chapter makes and sells 1,500 cheese balls each fall, sponsors a Christmas House Walk and is planning a 5K Fun Run on April 12.
The Hobart chapter hosts a fashion show and basket raffle, collects and distributes books to children and organizes the citywide Giving Tree project each Christmas.
The Griffith chapter sponsors Bunco Mania every summer and has a Nut Sale each fall, while the Crown Point chapter makes and sells gourmet chocolate Easter eggs and has hosted a Chefs' House Walk.
Gary's Beta Rho Chapter presents a fall style show, sells poinsettias, contributes to Sojourner Truth House, and makes fleece blankets for Riley Children’s Hospital, as does the Lowell chapter and others.
Lowell hosts Breakfast With Santa, staffs the information booth during the Lake County Fair, holds a spring flower sale, and will host Breakfast with the Easter Bunny from 9 to 11:30 a.m. April 5 at Lowell Middle School. New this winter, a Family Bowling Night is set for 6 p.m. Feb. 28 at Country Lanes in Lowell.