Due to the hard work of Kean students and faculty, MLK Week of Service has come to an end and has accomplished many things within its events. MLK Week of Service, not only commemorates one of the greatest historical figures, but also shows the dedications of Kean students when they set their minds to doing the right thing.
MLK Week of Service is dedicated to helping others, as inspired by the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. His words, “What are you doing for others?”, inspired the week of community service events that took place in February as well as March. The week of service was extended to March due to COVID and the regulations that come with the pandemic.
The first act of community service was Pack the Van. In this event, Center for Leadership and Service (CLS) asked students to take a hand in giving donations to students who are experiencing food insecurity. Many food items were needed such as cereal, canned meals and snacks. Once these were all collected, they would be made into care packages and distributed to those who need it most. This event is being pushed to the Fall semester due to the pandemic.
The next event in the week of service was Cougar Pantry Clean Out. This event was similar to the previous act because it revolved around food collected in the Cougar Pantry. For this act, CLS looked for students who were willing to volunteer in organizing the food items and throwing away expired goods. This event was originally scheduled for Feb. 22 but was moved to March 19.
On Feb. 25, the next act of service was the Care Package Creation. At this time, students volunteered to make care packages for food insecure students and helped in distributing them during the week of service. On this same day, the Paper Crane Project was taking place after the care package event. For this, CLS and volunteers crafted 1,000 paper cranes so that they could be donated to the September 11 Organization. Paper cranes are considered a symbol of world peace and with these creations, CLS hopes to spread the peace to the families recovering from 9/11.
The last activity was the Community Food Bank of New Jersey. In this event, volunteers reached out and worked with the Community Food Bank of New Jersey. This bank focuses on the issues of food insecurity and works to pack and distribute food to soup kitchens and soup pantries. Through the event page, students were able to register and volunteer for this final event.
Overall, MLK Week was a success and accomplished its mission of giving back to others. CLS is still looking for those willing to give donations next semester. So, if anyone is interested, they should look out for the event next semester on Cougar Link.