Northern to celebrate the life of Martin Luther King Jr.
January 11, 2017
Several activities including a reading program, community feed and a presentation by a civil rights activist will take place in Havre later this week to commemorate the life of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. ahead of what would have been his 88th birthday Sunday.
Students in grades kindergarten through six will learn about King today and Thursday through Read for Peace, a program by the Montana Campus Compact and AmeriCorps in which volunteers visit schools in Havre and throughout the state to read age-appropriate books about the civil rights icon.
Benjamin Dillon, a Montana Campus Compact and Americorps leader in Havre, said readers will include Havre High School and Montana State University-Northern students, including members of Northern’s Lights basketball team as well as staff from District 4 Human Resources Development Council.
Dillon said that so far in Havre, about 25 volunteers have signed up to read.
Volunteers are scheduled to read to students at Sunnyside Intermediate School Wednesday and Thursday from noon to 3:45 p.m. Readers will be in the school library and read to groups of students during their assigned library time.
Readers will also read at Lincoln-McKinley Primary School from 8:15 a.m to 9 a.m, St. Jude Thaddeus School from 8:35 a.m to 11:30 a.m and Highland Park Early Primary School from 10:15 a.m to 2:15 p.m.
“Basically we want to bring the impact of Dr. King’s work and life into elementary school classrooms into young student’s classrooms so that they learn from an early age the work of Martin Luther King and his impact,” Dillon said.
Friday, King’s life and legacy will be observed with a presentation at 11:30 a.m. followed by a community feed Friday in Northern’s Student Union Building Ballroom.
Judith Heilman, founder and executive director of the Montana Racial Equity Project will give a presentation on how, if at all, King’s work affected Montana and what progress has been in terms of multi-cultural understanding.
Christina Estrada-Underwood, Northern’s director of Diversity Awareness and Multicultural Programs, said the presentation will happen regardless of weather conditions because Heilman said she can give her presentation in person or by Skype.
After Heilman’s presentation Soul Food, a community meal, will take place staffed by volunteers who will prepare and serve the food, greet guests and clean up afterward.
Spud’s Grub Hut, Walmart, Gary & Leo’s Fresh Foods and Culligan’s Water have donated for the meal.
Estrada-Underwood said the meal and presentation are free and open to the public.