This year, in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the Grades students gathered together Friday morning before the long weekend. Our intention was to bring an awareness to the children of why there is a holiday on Monday, with an offering from some of the classes (poems and speech work) and faculty, as well as discussions around how to honor Dr. King’s memory and life’s work by helping others in our communities.
MLK Day is viewed in many communities as a “A Day On, Not A Day Off,” making Monday a day of service.
Dr. King once said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: ‘What are you doing for others?'”
In his tireless work for equality and justice for all, he recognized that helping each other will help move us all forward. The school invited all families to continue these discussions at home, and encouraged families to perform an act of service in their neighborhood or community over the weekend. We asked families to share their experiences with us. Here is one family’s story:
Getting into the Rhythm of Service
“My husband and I decided that we need to incorporate service into our monthly family rhythm. It’s incredibly important to us as a family.
Inspired by the school’s MLK Day of service initiative, we found an opportunity with NSCDC Youth Build in Salem to use the MLK Jr Day holiday as a day ON not OFF. The activity was to paint and decorate mason jars and plant them with fresh herbs to deliver to senior citizens living in assisted living facilities in the north shore. We arrived at 9:45 am at the NSCDC Youth Build headquarters on Lafayette St. and were greeted by the wonderful staff there. They had breakfast treats, coffee, and t-shirts for all participants. Before beginning, we all formed a circle and went around, introducing ourselves and telling the group what service or Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day meant to us. I think this was very important for our girls–it really cemented in their minds why we were here.
The NSCDC Youth Build team had the activity set up so well; different rooms for planting and painting and decorating. So, we split up and got to work. There was a great crowd of mixed ages–a lot of wonderful teenagers and many younger kids with their families. The girls took turns doing planting and doing the painting of the jars. They met so many new people they wouldn’t normally meet and had a great experience.
We heard later from the director of NSCDC Youth Build that the jars were well received and much appreciated.”
– Parent of two children in Nursery and 2nd Grade
Stay tuned for more opportunities to get inspired and participate in community service work with us, as we celebrate our 30th Anniversary with 30 Acts of Service.