Each year, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is observed as a federal holiday on the third Monday of January — today. The theme for this year is “Cultivating a Beloved Community Mindset to Transform Unjust Systems,” according to The King Center — a nonprofit founded by MLK’s wife, Coretta Scott King, to continue Dr. King’s legacy.
If you have time to dedicate to our community, here are three local volunteer opportunities:
- Hood Huggers | Help out in the Peace Gardens, donate time and knowledge, and assist with special events, including the annual Day of Service on MLK Jr. Day.
- MANNA FoodBank | Support the warehouse, table events, sort produce and bread, and help distribute food.
- BeLoved Asheville | Help construct affordable housing and more.
Or participate in these local events:
- Annual MLK Day of Service 2023 | Monday, Jan. 16 | 11 a.m. | Peace Gardens & Market, 47 Bryant St., Asheville | Free | Help tackle various service projects in the Burton Street community, including garden work, making art, and waste management.
- 13th Annual Kenilworth Celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. | Monday, Jan. 16 | 6:30 p.m. | Kenilworth Presbyterian Church, 123 Kenilworth Rd., Asheville | Free | Join the evening’s discussion around “Keeping the Promise: Accountability and Reparations in Asheville” with speakers Dr. Dwight Mullen and Dewana Little of the Reparations Commission for Asheville and Buncombe County.
- Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration Keynote Address from Clint Smith, “Our History, Reimagined” | Wednesday, Jan. 18 | 7-8:30 p.m. | UNC Asheville, 1 University Heights, Asheville | Free | UNC Asheville presents “Our History, Reimagined,” a Martin Luther King Jr. commemoration address from keynote speaker Clint Smith.
Looking for other ways to get involved? Check out more local volunteer opportunities.