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Martin Luther King Jr. Day is a day of service

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: What are you doing for others?”

Mlk2005_nolineInstead of taking the day off, many people volunteer their service on Martin Luther King Jr. Day to help others.

In recognition of King’s legacy of service, Congress designated the Martin Luther King Jr. Federal Holiday as a national day of service in 1994 and charged the Corporation for National and Community Service with leading the effort. 

Hundreds of thousands of people are volunteering on the MLK Day of Service throughout the nation.

To encourage more Americans to serve, the federal government offers programs such as AmeriCorps, the Peace Corps, and Senior Corps.

To provide more opportunities for Americans to help in their communities, Pres. Obama created the Task Force on Expanding National Service last summer. The task force focuses on offering new volunteer opportunities through interagency partnerships such as FEMA Corps and public-private partnerships such as the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps.

People who volunteered today and others who didn’t have the opportunity can use the Martin Luther King holiday as a jumping off point for volunteer activities throughout the year. You can find projects in your area by visiting Serve.gov or following #MLKDay on Twitter.

Local and state parks and other local and state government agencies also offer volunteer opportunities as do non-profit organizations.

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