Brothers have been jumping in a frigid lake in Ohio for longer than anyone in the collegiate chapter can remember.
Image: Art from Passion Works Studio now proudly displayed in the Phi Kappa Theta House at Ohio University
But this winter the lake was under construction, so no polar-plunge for the Phi Kaps.
Drew Glynn, VP of Fraternal Development, explained that the chapter was "hurting for something to do”, so he started searching.
He came across a local organization called "Passion Works Studio”. It’s an art studio that primarily serves folks with disabilities.
According to their website, "Our mission is to provide a creative and inclusive atmosphere in which artists with and without disabilities thrive. We will accomplish this by focusing on the ability of artists to change perceptions, raise awareness, and beautify our communities through outstanding works of art.”
The chapter started volunteering at Passion Works Studio this spring. "It’s a perfect fit for us” said Drew. "It is a great experience and our guys love volunteering there. We feel more connected to the community.”
Their service ranges from cleaning the studio to socializing with the artists.
Image: Example of artwork for sale made by artists at Passion Works Studios
"While it is about the art, it’s also about the relationships that are fostered there” said Drew. "It helps give the disabled the interaction on a regular basis that they would not get otherwise.”
Drew’s aunt lives with down syndrome, and another brother’s mom works with disabled children. They fully appreciate the mission of Passion Works Studio, and they’re delighted to share this with their Fraternity.
"As men of faith, it is our job to help those who are less fortunate” said Drew. "Working with other humans and making them happy is a reward that is hard to beat.”
Through Passion Works Studio, the Phi Kaps at Ohio University are helping to provide a better quality of life for the artists. Completed artwork can be purchased online, which Drew describes as a tool to showcase the talent of these special artists and help change "the negative perception of those with a disability”.
Image: Example of artwork for sale made by artists at Passion Works Studios SaveSave