How are we changing the way people think about volunteer work?

On your tour of the MLK Center, it’ll probably be hard to tell the difference between community members who are here seeking help and those who are offering it. That’s because none of us fit the idea of volunteering as a strictly one-sided relationship. There are no benefactors here. We’re all beneficiaries in the work of social justice.

You’ll likely notice one thing on your tour. The center is a lively place, where: people from various walks of life engage in honest, mutually rewarding (sometimes hard) conversations about how best to achieve transformative change in our neighborhood.

That’s why we prefer the term “collaborators.” It tells the truth about our volunteers—how they find themselves fully enfolded into the daily work of seeding opportunities to lift up our city for generations to come.

Opportunities for Collaboration

In the words of Dr. King, our collaborators seek to “transform suffering into a creative force.” Because of the variety of services we provide, each person is free to answer the call to serve in their own unique way. We invite our collaborators to harness their existing skills and intrinsic interests.

  • Are you a people person? Do you want to be on the floor reading to kids or listening to them read to you?
  • Are you a natural event planner? What about joining a fun development committee?
  • Are you a stickler for the fine print? Why not pitch in and help us draft community policies?

Benefits of Collaborating

Our collaborators embody the great benefit service work provides all parties involved. By being a part of the beloved community, you are in a privileged position to learn the art of living authentically in diverse communities. We offer our collaborators opportunities to work inclusively and ethically with people across differences. This is how we re-educate ourselves, pop bubbles, address inequality, and improve our collective quality of life.

An Open Door amid the Housing Crisis

Interested in being a Priority Landlord? The same way diversity within the classroom benefits schools, diversity within our neighborhood benefits the entire beloved community. So how do we make sure that’s possible? To do that, you have to talk about why it’s currently not possible for everybody. Our Priority Landlord Program is a transitional housing project.  Private landlords lease their spaces to the MLK Center to sublet to community members who are experiencing housing insecurity.

  • We’ll subsidize the rent
  • Help them pay off their eviction
  • Outline steps for home ownership or independently secured rentals
  • Get ready for home ownership or to rent their own place