Today we celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.... leader, civil rights icon, father, son, brother, and powerful speaker. Each year, the third Monday in January is observed as a federal holiday honoring Dr. King, and in general, banks, post offices, the stock market, public and private schools are closed. This MLK day is unusual since it is taking place during the fourth week of the government shutdown which is affecting many federal employees who are not being paid because the funding has lapsed for their agencies.
While many companies acknowledge today as a national holiday, some organizations do not include MLK day into their observed holiday schedule. If you're working today, you may be wondering what you can do to honor the life of Dr. King. Here's a list of activities that can be incorporated to celebrate his life.
Schedule an volunteer time: "Everybody can be great.... because anybody can serve."
Dr. King strongly believed in the power of serving others and the community. He reminded his followers that you don't need a college degree or an abundant amount of wealth to make a difference. Your passion and desire to serve will make a valuable impact. Take time out of your busy schedule, not only on today, but regularly, to serve others and make a contribution to give back to those around you.
Use your voice to encourage equality: "In the end, we will remember not the works of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."
Your voice matters, and can be used as a champion, ally, and to speak on the injustices people face everyday due to racism and bias. Be brave and start the conversation... ask how you can support those who are not like you. The first step is seek understanding.
Author of Listen In: Crucial Conversations on Race in the Workplace, Allison Manswell, is hosting a free webinar on January 22, 2019 from 12 pm to 1:30 pm CST. This webinar is open to the public and anyone can register for What Happens when you Break the Silence on Race?: Insight into Pandora's Box and join the conversation as panelist discuss the impacts of creating opportunities around race in the workplace.
Attend a scheduled event: "Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better."
Cities and neighborhoods across the country are planning parades, festivities, and a day of service to honor Dr. King on this holiday. Find an event near you to fellowship with others and take action to continue Dr. King's Dream. Use search engines, social media, and event platforms to find the perfect event close to home.
Whether you are working today or not, there are many ways to honor Dr. King's life and legacy. Stand for equality, change, and be a service to others to make a lasting impact. Not only today, but in the days to come. #DrKing365