Gray Encourages Residents to Honor MLK Legacy by Volunteering

dc.gov | 1/17/2014, 1 p.m.
D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray and Serve DC, the mayor's office on volunteerism, are calling on residents to honor the ...
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray and Serve DC, the mayor's office on volunteerism, are calling on residents to honor the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s life and legacy and mark the King holiday by volunteering in the District this weekend.

"Martin Luther King Jr. transformed the world through his service, leadership and faith,'" Gray said. "I call upon District residents to follow his example and commit to volunteering their time and energy to transform and improve their community for themselves and their neighbors."

Thousands of residents are expected to participate in approximately 30 service projects in every ward of the District over the weekend. Serve DC will coordinate the mayor's signature project, "It Takes a Village," which will deploy volunteer teams to 13 senior residence complexes across the District to raise awareness about emergency planning and assist those residents in completing emergency-preparedness plans.

"This year, we are particularly pleased to emphasize how volunteerism can help create safer communities through the 'It Takes a Village' project," said Jeffrey Richardson, D.C.'s chief service officer and executive director of Serve DC. "It is important to do emergency-preparedness education and outreach for our aging population. No matter your age or where you live in the city, we all want to be safe."

Presented in collaboration with the D.C. Department of Health's Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Administration, the D.C. Office on Aging and the D.C. Housing Authority, "It Takes a Village" is a complement to Serve DC's ongoing emergency-preparedness-volunteer programs and the recent launch of the mayor's "Age-Friendly DC" Initiative, which aims to help influence the health and quality of life of older people in Washington.

Residents can learn more about District-based service projects and register for volunteer opportunities on the Serve DC website, www.serve.dc.gov. Follow Martin Luther King Jr. Day-related events and activities on Twitter using the hashtag #MLKDay.

Taking place annually on the third Monday in January, the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service is the only federal holiday observed as a national day of service. The Day of Service is a part of "United We Serve," the President's national call to service initiative, and Serve DC's "Seasons of Service Days" portfolio, a diverse set of local, national and international service events designed to empower individuals, strengthen communities, bridge barriers and create innovative solutions to social challenges.