HPU’s “Day of Service” Honors Martin Luther King, Jr.

HIGH POINT, N.C., Jan. 19, 2015 – Two community gardens are ready to produce food and prevent neighbors from going hungry this spring.

A new mural at the Hartley YMCA encourages children to read and embrace literacy.

Hunger will be combatted with 20,000 meals that were packed and shipped to different parts of the world.

And at least six streets are cleaner than they were before this morning.

These efforts and many others would not be possible without the 30 service projects completed today by High Point University students, faculty and community members. For HPU’s annual Day of Service, classes were canceled so students could honor Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s memory and give back. This year, 600 volunteers contributed more than 1,500 hours of service.

The projects, organized by HPU and opened to all to participate, ranged from feeding the hungry, to cleaning community centers, to hosting a field day and read-in about King’s life for local children.

In the Slane Student Center, 20,000 meals were packed to be shipped around the world through an organization called Stop Hunger Now. One package of food, filled with soy protein, dried vegetables, rice and vitamins can feed six people.

“We were so excited as the class of 2017 to take on a service project today,” says Haley McKeown, president for the class of 2017. “These meals we are packaging today will be shipped all over the world to Africa, Haiti, Honduras, and third-world countries that don’t have the resources to sustain refrigerated foods.”

“I think it’s important to give back,” said freshman Jay Bishop as he organized activities for residents at Piedmont Christian Home today. “I also appreciate the leadership opportunities that service provides. I’m just hoping to make these peoples’ days a little bit better. If a day can be spent doing that, then it’s good for me and it’s good for other people too.”

Leaders of local nonprofits were appreciative of the help they received today, too.

“The students did a really good job,” said Rufus Reddick, employee at the Macedonia Family Resource Center where the community garden was topped today. “I would have had to do all of this garden work by myself. But thanks to their help, this garden is ready to go. We’re very grateful.”

In addition to the Day of Service, HPU also hosted its annual worship service where Rev. Raphael Warnock, senior pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, delivered the message.

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