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Be the Change: Nebraskans Called to Serve on MLK Day

Turning community concerns into action can help honor the life of Martin Luther King Jr. (Urban Promise/Flickr)
Turning community concerns into action can help honor the life of Martin Luther King Jr. (Urban Promise/Flickr)
January 15, 2018

LINCOLN, Neb. – This year marks the 50th anniversary of the death of Martin Luther King Jr., and his life and legacy will be honored Monday around the state.

The MLK Day holiday celebrating King’s birthday is a national day of service, and Christina Franklin, program officer for ServeNebraska, says folks are encouraged to make it a "day on, not a day off."

She says turning community concerns into action is a great way to continue the work of the slain civil rights leader.

"You can be the change that you want in your world,” she stresses. “We may feel small, we may seem small, we may be from a small town, live in a small community but we can make a difference where we are."

Franklin says volunteering at a local food pantry, mentoring a child and assisting an elderly neighbor are among the simple ways that Nebraskans can give back to their community.

King was killed April 4, 1968. A federal holiday was declared in 1983.

Franklin says King taught through his examples, and the holiday celebrates his values of courage, trust, compassion, dignity and humility. She says those messages can be carried out any day of the year.

"We encourage all Nebraskans to get out and volunteer and do some service on MLK Day and, if not on MLK Day, just sometime during the month of January to honor Dr. King's legacy," she urges.

Besides service projects, there will also be prayer breakfasts, lectures, film screenings, marches and other events for the holiday.

"The University of Nebraska-Kearney is putting on a great presentation about Dr. King and then they're going to be doing a candlelight vigil,” Franklin points out. “And a lot of churches will have MLK Day celebrations."



Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - NE