We are all human. We just tend to think a little differently.
That is the message that Eastern Washington University’s Alpha Xi Delta’s women’s sorority hopes to spread.
On Nov. 3, Alpha Xi Delta will host the first ever Football Frenxi. The event will take place on Roos Field from noon-4 p.m. and is open to the public. Proceeds will benefit Autism Speaks, Alpha Xi Delta’s national philanthropy.
Teams may consist of eight to 10 players, and are split into a men’s division and women’s division.
“We chose to do the Football Frenxi since Eastern is a huge football school. Everyone is going to get a goodie bag,“ said Madison Azim, Alpha Xi Delta’s philanthropy chairwoman. “We are just trying to make it all fun.”
In addition to the goodie bags, there will be an award for Most Valuable Player, Most Spirited Team and overall winners in both the men’s and women’s divisions.
Those who do not wish to play are still encouraged to attend. According to Azim, Alpha Xi Delta plans to have plenty of opportunities to get involved on the sidelines.
“We are going to have donation buckets. We are having activity stations. We will have bracelets and blue puzzle-piece cookies,” said Azim.
Also in the works is a kicker contest to see who can kick a football the furthest.
Donations will benefit Autism Speaks because autism is something that Alpha Xi Delta member, Nicole Branstetter says she is familiar with. Branstetter has two half-sisters and two nephews who have been diagnosed with some form of autism.
“[Autism] has been a really big part of my life,” says Branstetter. “It’s one of the main reasons I am in Alpha Xi Delta.”
According to the Autism Speaks website, 1 in 88 people will be diagnosed with some type of autism, affecting over tens of millions of people worldwide. Boys are four to five times more likely to develop the disorder than girls.
Branstetter said she hopes to educate the community and act as an advocate for her nephews.
“Honestly, the biggest thing is spreading awareness in our community,” she said. “I want my nephews to feel like they belong … I just want people to have a better understanding of what autism is.”
“When you bring people together, you can accomplish great things,” said Azim.