PLATTSBURGH, NY- 17 years ago the MLK Committee of Plattsburgh began holding a community service event in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Each year members of the community come together to continue MLK’s legacy and give back to the community.
Martin Luther King Jr once said, “Everybody can be great…because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” Over in Plattsburgh community members took his words to heart.
Every year since 2003, community members of all ages gather at the Trinity Episcopal Church in Plattsburgh to clean its soup kitchen.
“It’s a national service day in fact we are actually celebrating the 25th anniversary of this national day of service in Dr. Kings legacy,” said Plattsburgh Town Supervisor Michael Cashman.
In 1993 legislation was signed marking Rev Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s. birthday as a federal holiday. In 1994 congress designated the holiday as a national day of service and the Corporation for National and Community Service led the effort. Every third Monday in January, the MLK day of service is observed.
“Dr. King is you know, getting everybody involved no matter what your background is or what your nationality is. Everybody should come together and celebrate the legacy,” said MLK Committee Member Maxine Perry.
Plattsburgh community members believe it’s a “day on, not a day off.”
“It will make people feel better that you actually came to help, instead of sitting around on your phone like kids my age do,”said Middle School Student Jania Young.
Members of a youth advocacy group called Reality Check also took part in the special day of giving.
“If we can help in any way like volunteering here and going to the MLK community service stuff it’s a really big thing and i really like to be a part of it,” said Reality Check member Valerie LaFountian.