“Everybody can be great…because anybody can serve… You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
This Monday, January 21st, is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Since 1994, MLK Day has been a national day of service for people willing to take a “day on, not a day off.” If you’d like to invest some time helping a good cause this weekend, perform a quick search on Idealist and explore the dozens of organizations hosting events. To help you get started, we’ve put together a few opportunities below:
- If you live in the Pacific Northwest and want to do good on the 21st, you’re in luck! In Seattle, the Doric Lodge will be assembling emergency kits for victims of natural disasters, while outside Portland, the Ridgefield National Wildlife refuge needs volunteers to plant and protect native trees. Farther inland, the Red Cross is teaming up with the Spokane Fire Department to promote fire safety, and you can help spread the word!
- For green residents of the Golden State, check out Urban Releaf’s tree planting event in Oakland, or head south to Santa Barbara and join Channel Islands Restoration in the San Marcos Foothills to restore a creek-side habitat.
- In the Midwest, you can choose between several volunteer activities with the H.O.W.A. Family Center in Minnesota, or donate food or clothes to the Urbandale Food Pantry in Iowa. If you’re busy on the 21st, don’t worry, because the Fourth Presbyterian Church in Chicago is cleaning classrooms at a local school on the 19th.
- If you haven’t touched your copy of Where the Wild Things Are for a decade or two, head to Raleigh, NC and drop off your surplus Goosebumps at Bonnie’s Book Foundation. If you want to get some exercise on the 21st, plant some trees in Nashville with the Harpeth River Watershed Association or help the Center for Academic Service provide relief from the tornado that swept through parts of Alabama on Christmas Day.
- Of course, no post would be complete without a few opportunities from the Northeast! In New York City, Congregation Ansche Chesed and the Advent Lutheran Church will organize several family activities on January 20th, including creating birthday cards for elderly neighbors and assembling care packages. On January 21st in Cambridge, MA, create quilts, bookmarks, activity kits and more with Many Helping Hands. Last year over 800 people attended, and this year should be even more successful!
Wherever you live and whatever you want to do MLK day, Idealist has you covered. If you want to stay up to date on what’s new, just set up an email alert based on your favorite search. Have a great long weekend, and enjoy your day on!
Are you 50 or older? Check out these tips from nextavenue.org on how to make a difference on MLK Day.