Martin Luther King Day is approaching this coming Monday. The civil rights leader, known for peacefully fighting for African American rights in the sixties, will be celebrated at the Micronesia Mall with distinguished guests and the general public.
We spoke to Americorps program directors about how their acts of service aligns with MLK Day and how the community can participate…
Charlene Masewemai, Americorps UOG Volunteer Center Program Director says,”MLK Day is a national day of service, because it celebrates bringing communities together through service.”
Service, a key tenet of what the Serve Guam Commission and Americorps stands on. We spoke to members of Serve Guam and Americorps program directors about what MLK Day means to them and how their members will participate in this service.
Edward Mesa and Charlene Maswemai, both program directors for separate Americorps programs, are also chairs for this MLK Day’s events at the Micronesia Mall.
Mesa went into depth about what the day entails.”It kicks off at 11:00 with the Governor doing her Proclamation Signing along with the Lieutenant Governor. And then right after will be the Legislative Resolution. And then we have some guest speakers lined up to talk about service about MLK and the importance of MLK Day,” says Edward Mesa, Americorps Ayuda Para i Kommunidat Program Director.
It doesn’t end there. Mesa says Americorps members will be at the mall to help set up the event and to talk to the public about their Americorps programs in booths sprawled throughout the Center Court, “The Americorps members will be actively recruiting volunteers and future Americorps members too.”
It seems, MLK Day is more than just celebrating the breakthroughs in racial equality and advocacy in America, it’s also about the collaborative community effort to make change regardless of background.
Masewemai explains this by sharing a quote from the Dr. King.
“‘Everybody can be great because everyone can serve.'”
“Whether it’s helping your neighbor who is elderly, maybe cut their grass or wash their car whatever that is, you’re putting your differences aside and it’s just one goal trying to help each other people out. That’s what Americorps stands for, the service members give to their community.”
Even further, Mesa encourages the community to perform an act of service on MLK Day. Although it’s a national holiday, he calls it a day on and not a day off.
“If you can’t make it to the Micronesia Mall, do something at home. Do something to make a difference,” says Mesa.
“I challenge everyone to make a difference on MLK Day, January 16th 2023.”
The event is open to the general public. High school students have the opportunity to receive service learning hours for attending MLK Day. They can register at their schools or at the mall on the day of.
Visit the Micronesia Mall on Monday, January 16th, from 11 to 3 o’clock to participate in the day’s events and to learn more about Dr. Martin Luther King.