Portland, January 17th, 2016. There’s still time to join your friends and neighbors honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by volunteering over MLK Weekend. Last year, according to the United Way of the Columbia-Willamette, over 1,600 people in our area volunteered over the three-day weekend. Out at Gilbert Heights Elementary teens were sprucing up the community garden for Camp Fire Columbia. For the ninth year in a row, United Way of the Columbia-Willamette and Hands On Greater Portland are teaming up to make it easy for you to take action across Multnomah, Washington, Clackamas, and Clark Counties and make a difference through volunteer service. Here’s a link to volunteer opportunities.
Last year, local volunteers contributed a total of 6,416 hours through 72 different volunteer projects throughout the four-county region. United Way’s Hands On Greater Portland team, the organizer of the weekend’s festivities, estimates the value of the volunteers’ service at $136,982, based on the estimated value of a volunteer’s time at $21.35* per hour.
Volunteers from across the four counties collaborated on a variety of projects from painting, stocking shelves, restoring books for preschoolers, preparing food boxes, and beautifying school gardens and parks.
Approximately 45 of the volunteer projects were directly related to helping low-income kids and families, supporting United Way’s overall strategy to break the cycle of childhood poverty in our region.
“United Way is proud to recognize the life and legacy of Dr. King, and provide a space where residents across our four counties can link arms in service to move critical work necessary to strengthening our region,” said Keith Thomajan, United Way of the Columbia-Willamette’s President and CEO. “Dr. King believed that everyone plays a role in making America what it ought to be. By making service a part of our daily lives, we can help realize Dr. King’s dream and improve the lives of low-income kids and families across our region.”
Here’s a video about the history and future of MLK day. Corporation for National and Community Service
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?'” – Martin Luther King, Jr.