Washington D.C. – The King Holiday is recognized as "a day ON, not a day OFF" for Americans volunteering in their communities. Participation in King Day of Service activities has grown steadily each year since Congress passed the King Holiday and Service Act in 1994, calling on Americans to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy of citizen action. This year over 15,000 volunteers will unite in the District of Columbia for a Day of Service.
Serve DC and the Office of the Secretary are calling out an army of volunteers and supporters, crossing socioeconomic and religious boundaries, to take part in the day that honors the model of service and sacrifice embodied by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Volunteers will participate in over 1300 projects that spread throughout the District’s 8 wards.
MLK Day of Service 2008 is designed after Serve DC’s successful volunteer. model. As lead agency, Serve DC will facilitate the matching of volunteers to volunteer sites. Serve DC is partnering with District agencies, community-based organizations, schools, and faith based institutions to ensure that both citizens inside the District and within the Greater Metropolitan DC area are engaged in the day of service. The projects include: city beautification, administrative and manual aid to local non-profits, health fairs, school clean-ups, MLK educational forums, and college preparation fairs. Serve DC will utilize the day of service to progress sustainable programs that address the needs of the DC communities.
In the spirit of service, the DC’s opening rally will commence on Monday, January 21, 2008 at 10:30 am at One Judiciary Square. Immediately following the event, over 1000 volunteers will gather at the Center for Creative Non-Violence, which is the nation’s largest homeless shelter to participate in over 15 service projects.
View a listing of projects throughout the District or even register your own! Highlights from the day include:
- Greater DC Cares will host over 500 volunteers who will be participating in school renovation projects with educational forums on the state of DC public schools.
- 700 We Feed Our People volunteers will provide a nutritious meal and warm clothing and health screenings for homeless and poor citizens in the nation's capitol as a way to continue to draw attention to the plight of the poor and neglected outside of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library.
- There will be a restoration of Pope Branch Park by cleaning up trash and debris along the tributary and removing invasive plants which threaten its ecological health.
- DC Habitat for Humanity will be holding a special build on Martin Luther King Day. This build is a longstanding tradition to honor the legacy and to continue the vision of Dr. King.
Serve DC, within the Executive Office of the Mayor provides opportunities for Washingtonians of all ages and backgrounds to strengthen and promote the District of Columbia's spirit of service through partnerships, national service, and volunteerism. For more information contact Serve DC at (202) 727-7925.