University of the Cumberlands honored the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. this week by serving the Williamsburg community through multiple student-led volunteer opportunities.
The service events included a Mountain Outreach (MO) warehouse cleaning, an Appalachian Ministries (AM) senior center visit, and a First Baptist Church Food Pantry work day. Students were encouraged to attend any or all of the outreach opportunities in remembrance of King’s leadership, service, and national influence.
Mountain Outreach members and other student volunteers visited MO’s Emlyn warehouse in the morning. Volunteers then went through clothing and loaded racks of clothes into a truck to be transported to five other clothing distributers in the community.
“We are always looking to serve this community the best way we can,” said Marc Hensley, MO director. “Getting students involved – seeing them wake up, come out here, and help out – is a great thing. They’re helping us help others, and that’s wonderful.”
Students also joined Appalachian Ministries in visiting the senior center on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. They met with and assisted guests in the senior center, spent their day listening to stories and building relationships with different generations.
“I think this is an awesome opportunity,” said Caitlyn Howell, who served at the nursing home for the second year in a row. “It’s cool to be an example and give back. It’s nice to come back each year and grow more as a person.”
Even sports teams got involved in the service events, like the swim team, who gathered at First Baptist Church’s food pantry to stack dozens of bags’ worth of nonperishable food items in their proper places, lining the food pantry’s shelves. The swim team volunteered for this same service event last year on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
“We all enjoy it,” said Jessica Pope, president of Student Government Association and a member of the Cumberlands swim team. “This is one of my favorite community service opportunities of the year. We have to work together as a team to get all this finished. We do an assembly line so that we work together, and it’s really nice.”
Located in Williamsburg, Kentucky, University of the Cumberlands is an institution of regional distinction offering quality undergraduate, graduate, doctoral, and online degree programs. Learn more at ucumberlands.edu.