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Celebrating MLK Day, organizers ask neighbors to commit to service

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – The day honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Junior may look different this year. The pandemic is forcing many events to move online. However, organizers said the spirit is still the same.

The Kennedy King Memorial Initiative will celebrate the day virtually. This year’s initiative is to keep students safe when they head back to the classroom.

They’re asking the community to give back by donating towards “back to in-person school preparedness kits.” The executive director of the initiative Darryl Lockett said the day is about reflection and looking towards the future.

Every Martin Luther King Day is special but this year, considering the pandemic, the civil and political unrest, Lockett said we need to remember everything Dr. King stood for and apply it to our lives daily.

“Reach out to our fellow man to be of service on this day on this weekend. How much better as a community, how much stronger we can be, how we can eliminate some of the division and injustice people spent 2020 protesting about?” said Lockett.

As people continue to suffer during the pandemic Lockett said organizers believe now is the time to honor King’s legacy and cultivate community through service to others by making sure students have what they need to safely get their education when they go back to in-person classes.

They’re asking people to donate funds so they can purchase supplies like masks, hand sanitizer, water bottles, pre-sharpened pencils, paper and folders.

“As Dr. King says, anyone can be great because anyone can serve. This is a time where we can really be of service to our fellow residents and community,” said Lockett.

Lockett said following Dr. King’s leadership and serving the community is not only a commitment to the city but also a commitment to one another and making his dream real for everyone in Indianapolis.

“It’s really a commitment to eliminating some of the social inequities we see here. We love this city. We know there’s great things about it. How can we make sure everyone’s experience in Indianapolis is one where they see the same infrastructure of opportunity available to them regardless of their socioeconomic status,” said Lockett.

One-hundred percent of the donations received will be used to purchase supplies. They are also asking for notes of support and well wishes for the students to include in the kits.
Indianapolis Teaching Fellows will give the kits out. Donations will be collected until Wednesday.