January 18, 2017
LEWISTON, Idaho - The 2017 MLK Day of Service was a major success. On the holiday, 150 people came out to support the 6th Lewiston-Clarkston community service day. Volunteers helped at 9 local agencies whose goals range from caring for veterans and the elderly to providing clothes and meals to persons who are under-resourced.
Events started at the YWCA in downtown Lewiston before volunteers canvassed Lewiston and Clarkston for the afternoon. After serving, many people returned to the YWCA for a donated chili dinner and hot chocolate bar. Yellow Dog Flats entertained the crowd with classic protest and folk songs.
Yellow Dog Flats lead a candlelight vigil from the YWCA to the Center for Arts & History. Once at the Center, Living Voices’ actor Bob Williams performed a one man show about African-Americans during the American Revolution. Williams walked the crowd through the life of one teenaged African-American, Peter Freeman and Freeman’s experience during the war. The performance was a stark reminder of racial relations in American since the country’s founding. Living Voices was brought to Lewiston by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council.
At the post-service dinner Ryan Paulus, AmeriCorps VISTA with LCSC, thanked the crowd saying, “Let us take the energy from today and carry that throughout the year… Together, we create a more perfect union.” In all, the volunteers helped an estimated 4,650 people in the two hours of service. “The people in the LC Valley community should be very proud of what they did today,” Paulus said after the event.
One group in particular gave heed to the call for service. In two hours the LC Work Scholars, working at the Idaho Foodbank, reorganize 3,575 pounds of food, or 4,290 meals. Sophomore Work Scholar Kristen Gordon found the day to be meaningful. "I thought it was a lot of fun. It was really awesome how many backpacks we made in that little amount of time, and we helped a lot of children."
If you would like to take part in the MLK Day of Service next year contact Janet Marugg via email: firstname.lastname@example.org or Chelsea Weeks via email: email@example.com or by phone (208)792-2668