Service vs. Charitable Giving: What’s the difference?

As members of Alpha Sigma Alpha, we are encouraged to express our care and concern for others through support of national philanthropic partnerships and local communities. The shared value of generosity unites Alpha Sigma Alpha sisters across the world.

Alpha Sigma Alpha members and chapters are making a difference in their communities on a regular basis. Members are encouraged to impact communities in two ways: through charitable giving and hands-on service. During the annual D.O.T. Days, we focus on donating our time to the community specifically through service efforts.

Hands-on service and charitable giving: what’s the difference?

Alpha Sigma Alpha defines service as the hands-on interaction with a cause, while charitable giving is the term used to describe the collection of goods or money to donate.

Many service activities can involve both service and charitable giving components. Below are examples that differentiate between hands-on service and charitable giving.


Raking leaves for an elderly neighbor vs. Donating rakes to local school
Working concessions for free vs. Working concessions collecting proceeds
Visiting humane society vs. Selling cupcakes on campus collecting proceeds
for humane society
Cleaning up trash in a local park vs. Having a food drive on campus
Stuffing coach’s boxes for GOTR vs. Donating coach box supplies to local GOTR
Create, host and chaperone a ball vs. Donating dresses to local school for dances ball for a local senior home
Make and serve soup at a local soup kitchen vs. Donating soup to a local soup kitchen
Work with the local parks department to build playground equipment vs. Donating playground equipment to the parks dept.
Work with the local parks department to plant trees in the community vs. Hosting a fundraiser to buy trees for local parks
Coach a youth sports team vs. Hosting a sports equipment drive on campus
Work with the local parks department to paint park benches vs. Hosting penny wars on campus


Don’t forget that D.O.T. Days is about donating our time through service. Make sure your planned activities this week fall under the category of hands-on service. Reference the D.O.T. Days Planning Guide for more information.

How are you donating your time through service for D.O.T. Days this year? Share with us!

-Kim Richard, EK, director of events & programs

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