MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - More than 5,500 hundred volunteers in 10 Mid-South counties took part in last year’s MLK Days of Service. This year, the number’s supposed to be even higher.
Thursday night at the Benjamin Hooks Library, Memphis and Shelby County leaders joined with local non-profits and sponsors for the 2020 MLK Days of Service kick-off party.
“This is the fourth year we’ve done this,” said David Williams, the head of Leadership Memphis. “And we don’t see stopping anytime soon.”
Leadership Memphis and Volunteer Memphis coordinate a long list of projects with dozens of businesses and groups like Memphis City Beautiful, which will be handling projects at Overton Park, in Mitchell Heights, Berclair and Binghampton, to name just a few.
“It’s important to have these projects throughout the city,” says David Burgess, program coordinator with Memphis City Beautiful, “They’re close to anyone who wants to volunteer so you don’t have to go very far.”
MLK Days of Service takes place over four days, through the weekend and on the national MLK holiday on Monday. Kimberlee Richard with Clean Memphis says the ultimate goal is to inspire volunteerism 365 days a year.
“It is our hope,” she said, “that people will want to get involved with our mission to make Memphis cleaner, greener and more environmentally sustainable.”
The volunteers come from all walks of life and all ages.
A young lady named Kharma WMC Action News 5 met at the kick-off party is spending her 13th birthday volunteering. She says it’s important to her to do this.
“I just want to spread love,” she said. “And hope to let people know there’s light in a situation.”
Teams picked up their Care Like King t-shirts and got ready to roll up their sleeves and start serving, in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Junior.
“So that we can all, as a community, work together,” said Memphis City Council Chairwoman Patrice Robinson. “And come together to beautify our city and help those who may need an extra helping hand.”
If you’re interested in volunteering during the 2020 MLK Days of Service, click here to see a full list of opportunities.