Submitted by rfrazier on
AmeriCorps Staff

For 30 years, AmeriCorps has led the MLK Day of Service, bringing Americans together to build bridges and heal divides across the nation.

In 1994, Congress tasked AmeriCorps with leading Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, the only federal holiday designated as a National Day of Service, to encourage all Americans to volunteer to honor the life and legacy of Dr. King and improve their communities. Today, Americans and the world face compounding heartbreaking tragedy, highlighting inequities and injustices everywhere. Despite changing times, the importance of service remains unchanged – to overcome the forces that try to divide us, to see each other’s humanity, and give our neighbors a helping hand.

This MLK Day 2024, thousands of Americans nationwide united to build the Beloved Community of Dr. King’s dreams. Volunteers distributed fresh food, revamped their local schools, assembled care packages, and so much more to strengthen their communities.

Each year, MLK Day Champions, organizations, and nonprofits from across the country join AmeriCorps and the King Center to honor Dr. King’s legacy and create lasting change for our communities.

Check out some of the MLK Day service projects from across the nation: 

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated

As an organization steeped in service and an AmeriCorps MLK Day Champion, the sisters of Zeta Phi Beta, Inc. showed up and showed out. From coast to coast, chapters of their sorority united to feed veterans, provide resources to expecting parents, host MLK Day marches and celebrations, and more. Listen to Zeta Phi Beta President and CEO Dr. Stace NC Grant on the AmeriCorps podcast, Unheard Voices of Service, discuss whether Dr. King's dream still carries weight today and how service can take us from charity to justice.

City of Orlando

As an MLK Champion, the City of Orlando united its residents to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. King through service. Together they kicked off MLK Day with U.S. Hunger to pack one million meals to assist those struggling with food security. In the suburbs, 130 volunteers and their GreenUp initiative came together for a beautification project, planting 50 trees, mulching, and cleaning up litter.

Residents of Orlando united through service to pack meals.
Residents of Orlando united through service to pack meals.


Civic Works in the Snow

It may have been cold and snowing but that didn’t stop volunteers serving with Civic Works. Their volunteers braved the icy weather to clean up our community outdoor spaces.

Reading Partners Combat Hunger

In Colorado, Reading Partners joined forces with Volunteers of America and our AmeriCorps Seniors RSVP program to get things done for food and housing security in their community. United they spent the day of service building pantry boxes and hygiene kits for their neighbors.

President Biden Fired Up and Ready to Serve

President Biden joined AmeriCorps CEO Michael D. Smith, Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle L. Parker, and AmeriCorps members with Philabundance. They honored Dr. King’s Legacy by spending the day packing boxes of food to help the community fight hunger.

Thank you to everyone who helped bring in 2024 by taking action and showing up for your neighbors!

In the last 30 years, we’ve seen how service transforms communities and lives – from young people channeling their passions into purpose and careers to older folks passing down wisdom while building meaning and fulfillment in their own lives. AmeriCorps members turn one year of service into a lifetime of giving back. During our 30th anniversary, we celebrate and usher in the next era of service to see how it will continue to evolve to meet our country’s ever-changing needs and deliver on the promise of Dr. King’s example. 

As the year continues, we encourage you to keep the momentum going. Find volunteer opportunities, help others, and honor Dr. King’s legacy throughout the rest of the year.