ABOVE: Joya Hayes
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated (AKA) was founded on the campus of Howard University in Washington D.C. on January 15, 1908. It is oldest Greek-letter organization established by African American college-educated women and is comprised of nearly 300,000 college-trained members that are a part of more than 1,000 graduate and undergraduate chapters in the United States and around the world.
Back in 2018, the city of Houston rolled out the pink and green carpet for the nearly 20,000 members of Alpha Kappa Alpha who came to town for the organization’s 68th Boule.
Four years later, the ladies of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc are back, as nearly 5,000 members of the oldest Greek lettered sorority will take over downtown Houston from March 16th to March 20th for their 90th South Central Regional Conference (SCRC).
South Central Regional Director Joya T. Hayes is poised to lead the ladies from Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, and Texas, as they hope to shine the light on issues impacting the African American community while also participating in business meetings, social activities, community service, and honoring local leaders at the George R. Brown Convention Center.
As the ladies are “Reigniting the Flame of Excellence and Sisterhood” over the five-day conference, a few events will be open to the public.
*Bench Dedication and Wreath Laying Ceremony
The 21st International President of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Faye Beverly Bryant, will be remembered in a public bench dedication and wreath-laying ceremony on Thursday, March 17th, as a kickoff to the conference. Bryant, who was small in stature, was a giant in many circles. A quiet but powerful giant in the Houston Independent School District, Bryant began her professional career in the classroom, rising to become Deputy Superintendent over her four-decade career. Her dedication to education mirrored that of her commitment to service that stretched beyond Houston’s borders to international waters. The bench that will be dedicated in her name will be located on the campus of Booker T. Washington High School and will serve as an example to those who pass it to never limit themselves but use all of their power for their full potential.
With service being Alpha Kappa Alpha’s signature, members will recognize the contributions and service of community, civic, and political leaders who have and continue to ignite their neighbors to build better neighborhoods and surrounding areas at their public meeting during the 90th South Central Regional Conference. The City of Houston, Mayor Sylvester Turner, and other elected officials will attend and recognize Alpha Kappa Alpha’s 114-year history and work done in the Houston area. Rev. Al Sharpton will serve as the keynote speaker and will undoubtedly challenge and urge everyone in attendance to move forward through action.
Under the international program theme for 2018-2022, “Exemplifying Excellence Through Sustainable Service,” AKA members have committed themselves to leave a legacy of their service to other parts of the world. During the conference, members will take on four service projects. Attendees are being asked for various donations to be shared in numerous ways. Using the simplicity of a pillowcase, the ladies have taken needles, thread, ribbons, and a lot of creativity to stitch dresses and shirts for children in Haiti. Chapters are being challenged to donate one pillowcase dress/shirt for every registered member. Partnering with various chapters of the Lions Club International, the ladies will donate eyeglasses to protect the gift of sight for millions of individuals with poor eye health. One of the purposes of the sorority is to elevate the plight of women. Through a collaboration with Soles4Souls, members will donate money to purchase shoes and help women start a small business, thereby creating an economic impact. AKA will also support the ongoing relief efforts to end the COVID-19 global pandemic by collecting masks, gloves, hand sanitizers, tissue, cough drops, disinfectant wipes, and face coverings to make survival kits.
*Honey Do Reception
No one makes it in life alone, and neither do the women of Alpha Kappa Alpha. Members are known to call on their husbands and significant others to help with their acts of service to all mankind by saying, “Honey do this, or Honey do that.” These men of valor will be formally presented and inducted into the Honey Do Society to further align themselves as support systems for the ladies of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.
Hosting these festivities will be the members of the ten graduate and five undergraduate chapters that call the Houston area home.
The South Central Region of Alpha Kappa Alpha is on fire and will come to Houston to reignite the pink and green flame. Houston, be ready to bring the heat.
For more information, contact Kelly P. Hodges at 832-865-4722 or email@example.com.