Published February 7, 2020
A crowd of 160 braved the cold to volunteer at the St. Joseph Center of Arkansas in North Little Rock for the 25th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service Jan. 20. A ceremony in the center’s chapel featured an address by LeRoi Emerson, an AmeriCorps member serving with the St. Joseph Center program Full Circle FarmCorps.
“Dr. King recognized the power of service. He understood that we all have a stake in society,” Emerson said. “He recognized that an individual who supports their society can strengthen communities, bridge barriers and address social problems.”
The nonprofit coordinated 560 volunteer hours through several projects including pasture restoration, painting, garden maintenance, cleaning, roofing a greenhouse and even mucking out a chicken coop.
Executive Director Sandy DeCoursey said, “Food is intensely tied to poverty alleviation, and education around agriculture is central to building economic wealth”.
Other groups represented were Central Arkansas Master Naturalists, Our House, Pfeifer Kiwanis Camp, St. Mark Young Adults, EngageAR, Clinton School of Public Service, Dunbar Community Garden, Runyan First Baptist, Harding University, North Little Rock Fit 2 Live, Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, Be Mighty Little Rock, Adult Learning Alliance of Arkansas, and local residents.
The day culminated in a barbecue lunch.