With the grim forecast for Hurricane Barry, the national sorority, Delta Sigma Theta, had to make a last minute decision to cancel the remaining events for their national convention in New Orleans. They had days worth of meals for their 16,000 convention participants that would now go unused.
Instead of wasting this bounty of food, Delta Sigma Theta, the 106 year old organization, which has a storied history of public service, and their caterer, Centerplate, made the generous decision to donate the meals to the Second Harvest Food Bank of South Louisiana. While the storm made its way toward New Orleans, Centerplate transported the food to Second Harvest which will store it for residents in need who wait out Barry.
A spokesman for Second Harvest Food Bank, Jay Vise, thanked the generous sorority for thinking of the community in this time of turmoil. “It’s really heartwarming for these ladies … when their major conference gets canceled, the first thing they thought of was to help other people,” Vise said.
According to CNN, Beverly Smith, national sorority president and CEO thanked Centerplate for their partnership in this donation:
We are delighted that Centerplate donated the food we purchased making it available as a result of us terminating our convention early,” the sorority’s national president and CEO, Beverly Smith, said in a statement. “With 16,000 attendees and two food functions canceled — our Sisterhood Luncheon and closing Soiree Celebration — there was inordinate amounts of food that would have been wasted. Kudos to Centerplate.
Delta Sigma Theta, the largest predominantly African-American sorority, was founded by 22 undergraduates at Howard University in 1913. It has more than 300,000 members around the world and more than 940 chapters.
By this afternoon, Hurricane Barry had made landfall on the Louisiana coast and weakened to a tropical storm. But while it may no longer be considered a hurricane, 77,000 people are without power and predictions of a possible rainfall of up to 25 inches are in the forecast, likely to cause tremendous flooding. Certainly this food will not go to waste nor will the generosity of Delta Sigma Theta and Centerplate go unnoticed.