SouthCoast Students Serve in Honor of Dr. King
Hundreds of middle and high school students from around the SouthCoast took part in the annual Martin Luther King, Jr Day of Service Monday morning.
In New Bedford, students gathered at Normandin Middle School for a teach in. Students learned about Dr. King's legacy, demonstrated some of their own talents and watched a short film about his march from Selma, AL to the state capitol Montgomery in the name of the Voting Rights Act.
Students were then encouraged to talk amongst their peers and reflect on Dr. King's message and think about ways to continue to better serve their own communities.
Normandin eighth grader Andrea is active in serving her community and believes the day of service is a great way to get others involved as well.
"I think it's really good for the community because it brings people together for a day of community service," Andrea said.
Typically, the program began at the middle school and ended with a service project at GiftsToGive in Acushnet. However, this year, due to inclement weather, the march was postponed and students will complete the project at a later date.
Despite the weather, Normandin eighth grade teacher Justine Santos said the crowd was great and everyone was happy with the turnout.
"We're a little disappointed with the weather so we can't march today, but every year it seems to grow and every year it gets better and better so we're very excited today," said Santos.
This year was the first to include service projects in Fall River, sponsored by United Neighbors of Fall River and the Boys & Girls Club of Fall River.
During their program, they also held a teach in as well as completed several service projects including weaving mats for the homeless and learning about what it means to stand up for others.
All projects and programs were supported by the Massachusetts Service Alliance, UMass Dartmouth's Leduc Center for Civic Engagement, and in conjunction with the SouthCoast Serves collaborative.