Sigma Paw Gamma raises money for animals, relieves stress

Paige Nelson, junior in communications, holds Gary, a terrier mutt, at the Sigma Paw Gamma event outside Leasure Hall on April 28, 2016. (George Walker | The Collegian)

As finals approach, many students may find themselves feeling burnt out. To help relieve stress, Sigma Tau Gamma fraternity and K-State Counseling Services partnered up with the Riley County Humane Society for a fundraiser in which students could alleviate end-of-semester woes by interacting with dogs outside Leasure Hall on Thursday.

“We wanted to create an environment where people can de-stress and learn how to manage stress,” Jonathan Estes, sophomore in mechanical engineering and member of Sigma Tau Gamma, said. “We also have flyers with info on how to get involved with Counseling Services.”

Wendy Barnes, online programs and outreach coordinator of K-State Counseling Services, said she helped coordinate the event.

“(The fraternity) wanted to have a focus on stress management,” Barnes said. “There have been studies that show petting animals, whether it be dogs or cats, provides physical and mental stress relief.”

In addition to helping students de-stress, the fraternity was also raising money for the humane society.

“We don’t have a facility, so all of our animals are in foster homes,” Kayla Walti, event coordinator for Riley County Humane Society, said. “We are trying to raise money to get a facility within the next couple of years.”

While people were invited to pet the dogs for free, a $1 donation was suggested. All donations went to the humane society.

This is not the first time Sigma Tau Gamma has partnered with the human society, Walti said.

“They’ve helped us with a couple of events in the past, so we like to keep connected with them,” Walti said.

Members of Sigma Tau Gamma volunteered at the humane society’s booth during “Dogtoberfest” last October, according to a post on the Riley County Humane Society’s Facebook page.

Counseling Services will also be hosting “Pet Away Stress” May 4 from 11 a.m to 1 p.m. in the Quad.

“We’re taking donations of food and other items, especially leashes,” Barnes said. “Donations would be greatly appreciated.”

The “Pet Away Stress” event will raise money for the Purple Power Animal Welfare Society, Barnes said.

Hello! I'm George Walker, and I graduated from K-State in 2017 with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and minors in journalism, leadership studies and queer studies. I have passions for design, development, and photography, and I'm a former editor-in-chief and photo/multimedia editor.