city-of-homestead_alphas_web.jpgHOMESTEAD – The City Council officially named Oct. 16 as the Iota Pi Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. Day. The Iota Pi Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity received special recognition from the City of Homestead’s acting mayor and council for its years of service to the community.

During the proclamation presentation, the city’s vice mayor highlighted the chapter’s activities both in the Homestead and South Florida communities. 

Since its charter on Dec. 22, 1969, IPL has served the South Miami-Dade community through its civic and philanthropic commitment. Originally founded in Richmond Heights, through the years the chapter’s

influence, membership, and activities have grown to impact all the major municipalities extending from Downtown Miami to Homestead.

Staple projects of IPL include annual participation and donations to Relay for Life, American Cancer Society, March of Dimes, Boy Scouts of America, Big Brother Big Sister, Ronald McDonald House, Toys for Tots, domestic violence awareness, resources for the homeless, youth athletic programs, youth mentoring program, Head Start, scholarships to local high school seniors, youth tutoring program, meal donation, and domestic and international relief campaigns.

Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity is the first collegiate Greek-lettered fraternal organization created by African Americans and whose membership extends to men of all races, religions and cultural backgrounds. Since its founding on Dec. 4, 1906, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity has supplied voice and vision to the struggle of African Americans and people of color around the world.

Alpha Phi Alpha was founded at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York by seven college men who recognized the need for a strong bond of brotherhood among African descendants in this country. The visionary founders, known as the “Jewels” of the Fraternity, are Henry Arthur Callis, Charles Henry Chapman, Eugene Kinckle Jones, George Biddle Kelley, Nathaniel Allison Murray, Robert Harold Ogle, and Vertner Woodson Tandy.

The Fraternity initially served as a study and support group for minority students who faced racial prejudice, both educationally and socially, at Cornell. The Jewel founders and early leaders of the Fraternity succeeded in laying a firm foundation for Alpha Phi Alpha’s principles of scholarship, fellowship, good character, and the uplifting of humanity.

Alpha Phi Alpha chapters were developed at other colleges and universities, many of them historically black institutions, soon after the founding at Cornell. While continuing to stress academic excellence among its members, Alpha also recognized the need to help correct the educational, economic, political, and social injustices faced by African Americans. Alpha Phi Alpha has long stood at the forefront of the African-American community’s fight for civil rights through leaders such as: W.E.B. DuBois, Adam Clayton Powell Jr., Edward Brooke, Martin Luther King Jr., Thurgood Marshall, Andrew Young, William Gray, Paul Robeson and many others.