Wichita sorority buys gifts for families displaced by house fires

WICHITA, Kan. A Wichita sorority steps up with an effort to spread holiday cheer to a pair of local families overcoming personal losses.

The families of students at Wichita's Cleaveland Traditional Magnet Elementary School lost almost everything to separate fires in recent weeks. When Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority members heard what the families had been through, they sprung into action.

Sorority members bought gifts for children in both families, making sure they don't go without on Christmas.

it falls in line with the sorority's mission, which members say is based on service.

"One of our targets is to strengthen the family, and so if we can strengthen the family after they've lost everything in a devastating fire and bring gifts to them and opportunities for their parents to purchase more gifts for them, that means the world to us as a sorority," Alpha Kappa Alpha member Joy Barnes says.

Cleaveland Principal Michelle Wilkes says the act of kindness has an impact beyond the families helped by the sorority.

"You hear a lot of the negative things that are going on in our society today, and just being able to know that there are people like Alpha Kapa Alpha out there, wanting to do things for a family, wanting to enrich the lives of children and just be a positive role model, a positive force in our community is just a beautiful thing," Wilkes says.