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Local volunteer opportunities for MLK Day

Honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with these local volunteer opportunities.

Martin Luther King Jr. Cola

The Stone of Hope fountain with engravings of Martin Luther King Jr.’s quotes inside of Martin Luther King Jr. Park.

Each year, Martin Luther King Jr. Day is observed as a federal holiday on the third Monday of January — today. The theme for this year is “Cultivating a Beloved Community Mindset to Transform Unjust Systems,” according to The King Centera nonprofit founded by MLK’s wife, Coretta Scott King, to continue Dr. King’s legacy.

If you have time to dedicate to our community, here are three local volunteer opportunities:

  • Harvest Hope | Help feed families by volunteering for the crisis pantry or organizing a food drive.
  • Transitions Homeless Center | Create and lead a class to help clients learn practical skills like budgeting and applying for jobs, or recreational activities like art, fitness, and hobbies.
  • Big Homie Lil Homie | Become a mentor and build strong, trusting relationships, positive attitudes, and life skills through mentoring and enriching life experiences. You must be able to spend at least one hour with your mentee each month.

Aside from lending a hand, you can also commemorate MLK by attending one of these local events:

  • The 35th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ceremony is happening today at 4 p.m. at the Martin Luther King Jr. Park and Community Center, (2300 Greene St.). Columbia Native and NBA Hall of Famer Alex English will be the keynote speaker.
  • Bonus — The Columbia Museum of Art is offering free admission today to honor Dr. King. Browse several exhibitions and attend “A Storytelling Celebration” — a special event that celebrates the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Looking for other ways to get involved? Check out more local volunteer opportunities.