Tag Archives: martin luther king day

King Day of Service

16 Jan
2010

“Life’s most urgent question is:

what are you doing for others?”

Martin Luther King, Jr

This Monday marks the 15th Annual King Day of Service; a day in which citizens are challenged to transform Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s life and teachings into community service that helps solve social problems. By participating in service projects that empower individuals or strengthen communities, people will work together towards a common goal of doing good,  which not only serves others, but helps to exemplify the values that Dr. King preached: we are all equal, and we can all work together to make things right for ourselves.

So this Monday, get out there and serve! Here are some organizations who are doing something extra on King Day-and some links to help you get involved:

-New York City Coalition Against Hunger will sponsor their Seventh Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Anti-Hunger “Serve-a-Thon” event which is a three-day event featuring volunteer events at New York City’s food pantries and soup kitchens. If you miss out this weekend, check out their Hunger Maps, where you can search and find food pantries and soup kitchens in your area to volunteer at year round!

– The Met Council needs volunteers to help build a greenhouse for one of their low-income senior residences. You’ll be asked to help build shelves, plant flowers and vegetables. Find contact information (and more opportunities) on the NYC Service Website.

Children for Children, a NY organization founded by parents to foster community involvement and social responsibility in young people, is hosting two free events for kids and teens this Monday in Manhattan. Take your kids to Martin Luther King Jr. High School or PS 57  to participate in a day of service and activities from 10m-2pm. To learn more about attending the Eighth Annual Grow Involved, contact Abby Huber at 212.850.4170 or by email at abby@childrenforchildren.org; for more details click here.

-Head to the Jewish Community Center in Manhattan on the 18th. You can help JCC staff and local residents make welcome kits for hospitalized kids, prepare meals for the homeless, and participate in other community service activities in and around the building. To register, you can contact Judy Gross at 646.505.4450.

-iMentor : Become a mentor! There are kids and teens in this city who don’t have proper role models to guide them through school and show them that someone cares. With iMentor,  an NYC-focused online mentoring program, you can correspond weekly by email with your mentee and meet them in-person at events throughout the year. (January is National Mentoring Month!)

I may be missing some things, but Time Out New York is here to fill in my blanks! Check out their weekend recap for what you can do this Monday to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Volunteer your time, donate blood, or simply attend an event where you can learn about a great man and the legacy he left behind.

Other interesting reads about the day:

Trinity Conference Center

USA Today

MLK Day of Service website

January is National Mentoring Month!

10 Jan

January is National Mentoring Month, a time to recognize those who give generously of themselves by mentoring young Americans, and a time to focus the nation’s attention towards the cause in the hopes of gaining new mentors for our nation’s children in need. This month was officially proclaimed so by President Barack Obama earlier this week, as seen here on the White House website. Mentoring a child not only enriches their life, but your own as well. Regardless of whether you coach, teach, or just spend time hanging out, you’re exemplifying (hopefully) how to be a responsible adult and become a role model for kids who may not have an adult in their life to look up to.

On the Serve.gov website, they state that “Together, the Harvard School of Public Health, MENTOR, and the Corporation for National and Community Service are working to focus national attention on the need for mentors. If we – individuals, businesses, government agencies, schools, faith communities and nonprofits – can work together to increase the number of mentors, we assure brighter futures for our young people.”

If you need convincing on how impactful mentoring a child can be, take a look at some of the tributes written on the Harvard Mentoring Project website. The sixth annual ‘Thank Your Mentor Day’ is January 22nd, but the tributes have already begun pouring in from around the country from former and current mentees, young and old, expressing their gratitude.

In order to help you get started mentoring a child, I’ve listed some resources below that should help those in New York trying to find the right opportunity:

The Mentoring Partnership of Long Island (Hauppauge) – (631) 761-7800

The Mentoring Partnership of New York (New York) – (212) 953-0945

iMentor (NYC-focused online mentoring with weekly email correspondence and in-person meetings and events throughout the school year)

Administration for Children’s Services (NYC Gov. Site; includes links to Big Brothers Big Sisters, Mentoring USA, MPNY)

In2Books (online mentoring program that involves reading and discussion)

You should know that most mentoring programs require a background check and training, and then you will be paired with an appropriate mentee that perhaps shares some of the same interests as you. It is also a big commitment to make, as you are promising your time to child; don’t make the decision hastily or if you’re unsure of how much time you’ll be able to give on a regular basis. If you’re unsure of how you’ll be a one-on-one situation with a child, it may be a good idea to attend one of the many projects New York Cares offers that involve spending time reading with children or teaching them computer skills. It’s a great way to get your feet wet and see if this is something you really want to do. The online mentoring programs are a great alternative to the traditional programs (such as Big Brothers Big Sisters) for busy professionals, as they tend to involve significantly less time committal and little to no travel.

If you are an organization that has mentoring opportunities available, please email me or comment below to list them on this site!