Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service 2011

Jan. 17, 2011 at Miami Dade College(MDC)-Wolfson, MDC students, I Have a Dream-Overtown, Inc., and I Have a Dream-Miami, Inc., all gathered in tribute to the late, GREAT, Dr. King, Jr. Representatives from each organization went on stage to express the influence Dr. King has had on their life. Christian Cruz, spoke on behalf of IHAD-Overtown, and boldly stated, "To me Dr. King represents honor, freedom, and equality." He thanked King for uniting people of all ethnicities and saying NO to racism. Our Dreamers presented a MLK Day of Service banner along with a portrait of King drawn by Jaimesha Smith, Trenice Maddox, Demani Blatch, and Vernon Maddox. 

For our service-learning event, we traveled to Oleta River State Park and joined forces with Urban Paradise Guild to help remove invasive plants called Burma Reed but along the way it started raining. Nevertheless, the weather did not stop us from fulfilling Dr. King's legacy of serving others. Once we arrived at the service site, we all rain under th registration tent. Then we ran under the instruction tent. With no where else to run and looks of "how are we going to work in the rain?"; Urban Paradise provided us with clear trash bags to make ponchos, head gear, and any other article of clothing we needed to stay somewhat "dry." 

Once ready to work, the Dreamers were instructed to remove the Burma seeds that grow at the very tip of these tall plants. We have to place all the seeds in plastic bags and make sure none touched the ground, because if they did more plants could grow. After spending a few hours in the rain with hopes of making the environment a little better, we concluded our Day of Service with lunch at the pavilion. Although it rained that day, it was also very symbolic of the types of conditions those who marched in the Civil Rights Movement had to endure for the betterment of America. 

"The greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members, a heart of grace and a soul generated by love.” -Coretta Scott King

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