MLK Weekend of Service
by Angela Ebron
Volunteers prepping meals at Masbia, Food Bank For New York City member agency.
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’” Although Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke these words decades ago, his message is as clear today as it was then. Which is why Food Bank For New York City invited New Yorkers to join in a weekend of service to honor Dr. King’s legacy and his wish for all people to come together as one community.
From January 19 through January 21, more than 250 volunteers lent a hand to help New Yorkers in need at eight locations, including Food Bank’s Warehouse Distribution Center in Hunt’s Point and member agencies in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx. Some volunteers served in their own neighborhoods, while others made the trip to neighboring boroughs.
At Food Bank’s Bronx warehouse, volunteers sorted and repacked donated food for distribution to soup kitchens, food pantries and shelters around the City. Other volunteers served meals at New York City Rescue Mission in lower Manhattan; helped cook lunch for soup kitchen patrons at Masbia in Flatbush; prepped and distributed sandwiches to area residents at Macedonia AME Church in Flushing; and packed and delivered food in the community at Resurrection and Life Church in the Bronx, to name a few.
By the end of the weekend, volunteers had logged a total of 771 hours of service! Amir Khan of Brooklyn, a social work student at York College, happily put in more than three hours at Masbia, chopping vegetables and preparing meals. “I just wanted to help people,” he says. “It feels good to make a difference and give back to the community. And the timing made the experience even more meaningful because of the connection to Dr. King.”
Angela Ebron is Food Bank For New York City’s writer and editor.