Tucker Hein, ATO philanthropy chair and junior at OU studying biology and Spanish, said working with local students has been a great experience for the fraternity.
“It’s made us feel more connected to the Norman community. A lot of fraternities and sororities do philanthropies that benefit organizations on a larger scale. I think we’re unique to OU in that we want to connect directly to Norman,” Hein said.
Partridge said NorthHaven’s youth have enjoyed time with ATO above many of the church’s other activities.
“This becomes one of our more popular get togethers. If all the students could come every week they would,” Partridge said.
Students seem to feel understood knowing that someone has been in their shoes and can give them advice, Hein said of his interaction with students at the weekly meetings.
ATO was founded on Christain principles, so it seems fitting that it would work with some of Norman’s Christian youth.
“The fraternity accepts everyone no matter their beliefs, but this philanthropy work is a cool connection with our tradition and past,” Hein said.
Additionally, ATO helped NorthHaven staff a football event in the fall 2013 that included games and prizes. Most recently, ATO helped plan and organize a volleyball night for the NorthHaven students. Students and fraternity brothers got a little wild playing Nuke ‘Em, eating pizza and hanging out.
“My frat, we’re a group of generally hard working individuals and if we have the time and resources then why not give back,” Hein said.
NorthHaven currently serves about 30 youth, sixth through 12th grade, in the NorthHaven Student Ministry. NorthHaven offers traditional Sunday morning and Wednesday night worship services for its youth as well as hosts events throughout the year and takes its youth to summer camp.
Partridge said youth from other congregations are welcome to join NorthHaven Student Ministry as often as they like to fulfill their worship needs. The student ministry will soon move into a new 1,300 square feet classroom that will hold about 90 to 100 people.
For more information about NorthHaven, visit northhavenchurch.net. For more information about Alpha Tau Omega at OU, visit ouato.org.
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