LANCASTER – About 2,000 volunteers converged to paint, rake and clean, while taking part in more than 30 different projects last month for the seventh annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service, according to Lancaster city officials.
“These projects benefit not only the physical appearance of our neighborhoods; more importantly, they build our sense of community,” stated Vice Mayor Marvin Crist.
The areas between K-4, K-8, 20th Street East and 25th Street East were littered with trash prior to the Day of Service activities. With rakes in tow, more than 80 volunteers came out Jan. 18 to the Antelope Valley Illegal Dumping Task Force Cleanup project. Participants worked from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. to rid the areas of illegally dumped waste.
“These volunteers are helping ensure that the Antelope Valley remains environmentally friendly and the community is rid of costly and unhealthy eyesores,” Council member Ken Mann said. “We strive to keep the Antelope Valley beautiful through education of proper waste disposal and dedicated volunteers.”
About a dozen volunteers participated in the El Dorado Park Preschool Playground Improvement Project. Participants painted hopscotch and foursquare games on the playground. They also cleaned toys.
“We are grateful to all the volunteers who worked so hard to enhance this facility,” Crist stated.
Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service has become so popular amongst Antelope Valley residents that the events have spread into the weeks surrounding MLK weekend. This year’s projects started early during the week of January 13 with blood drives at both AV Hospital and the Red Cross; projects benefitting the homeless and low-income families; makeovers for two hospice patients and caregivers by beauticians who volunteered their time; and a landscaping project, with volunteers planting trees at Mariposa Elementary School.
Several additional community projects will be completed throughout the coming weeks.
“What better way to love your neighbors, than to serve them? We love our community, and we’re thrilled to have this opportunity to bless our neighbors. It’s a joy to partner with local organizations and volunteers to bring projects such as these to our valley,” concluded Sandra Johnson, Lancaster City Council member.
For more information regarding the City’s MLK Day of service, visit www.cityoflancasterca.org/mlkday.
(Information via press release from the city of Lancaster.)
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