Dr. Stacie NC Grant, International President and CEO of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, visited Liberia on March 8th to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the Delta Iota Zeta Chapter’s historic chartering.
During her visit, Dr. Grant announced a $100,000 breast and cervical cancer screening and treatment project for women in the New Kru Town community, which will be implemented with the Liberia Cancer Resource Initiative (LCRI), Public Health Initiative Liberia (PHIL), local medical practitioners, hospitals and service providers between April and November 2023. According to a press release issued by the Liberia Graduate Chapter, this project is part of the Sorority’s Global Day of Service program, which is dedicated to the 2023 Year of the International Woman: Serving and Advocating for Health Justice at Home and Abroad.
Dr. Grant arrived in Monrovia with the organization’s Atlantic Region International Area Director, Salaine Atkins-Little, on March 8th. Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated was founded in 1920 at Howard University by five women and is the first of nine similar organizations established by African-Americans to establish a chapter in Africa. The sorority’s Delta Iota Zeta Chapter was chartered in Liberia in 1948, with the late Dr. Rachel Townsend as its first president.
The women of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated observe the last week of February and the entire month of March as Finer Womanhood month. They commemorated International Women’s Day on March 8th with the market women of Swaggar Island in a program that was in collaboration with Lifting Individuals Through Education (L.I.T.E), a not-for-profit organization founded by a member of the sorority, Monigo Saygbay-Hallie.
On March 9th, the delegation visited the Redemption Hospital, which is Delta Iota Zeta Chapter’s Adopt-A-Hospital. Zetas distributed new mother kits to women in the maternity ward, led a consortium of partners to rehabilitate the oxygen plant, and held its 4th annual holiday toy drive for the pediatric ward.
The Ann Sandell Independent School in Paynesville is the chapter’s Adopt-A-School, and on March 10th, the school presented an appreciation program to the delegation which included a tour of the school educating more than 700 students, a cultural performance, gifts for the delegation and chapter members, and cultural dance training. Dr. Grant delivered Pen Pal letters from the sorority’s youth auxiliaries from Delta Zeta Zeta Chapter of Prince George’s County, Maryland, USA. Several hundred reusable menstrual pad kits were donated to the girls, and a book discussion on “My Body, My Treasure” was facilitated by the author, Brenda Brewer Moore, of Kids Educational Engagement Project.
The Finer Brunch, held on March 11th at the Royal Grand Hotel, was the key celebration for the 75th Anniversary. The Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening and Treatment Project was announced, and the Antoinette Tubman Legacy Award was given to the only surviving 1948 charter member Soror Mabel Fagans-Hill and to Soror Tidi Stewart. The Emerging Woman of Excellence Award was given to Ms. Precious Joy Teeweh for excellence in early childhood education, and the 2023 Woman of Excellence Award was given to Mrs. Leymah Gbowee for her outstanding service to the community, promotion of peace, and dedication to uplifting all Liberians.
The Antoinette Tubman Cheshire Home, named after the honorary member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc, was visited on March 12th, where the delegation learned about the Home’s needs and provided assistance in the development of sustainability plans.
The week-long celebrations culminated in a leadership training session for 42 school principals from Montserrado and Margibi, held in collaboration with African Community Exchange on March 14th at the Orange Digital Center. The training focused on the responsibilities of a leader and a manager, job description development, performance evaluation, professional development, the impact and importance of data, as well as self-care. This training was the second component of a program that began in October 2022, and it provided the participating school principals with valuable insights and tools to help them better lead their schools and communities.
The delegation departed Liberia on March 12th, after five days of programs and service. Dr. Grant’s godmother, the late Rev. Mother Cora Paris, who had a significant influence on her life, was Liberian, making this visit particularly special for her.
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