January 14, 2021 | , ,

MLK Day of Service 2021: Volunteer Opportunities, Virtual Events & More


Honor the life & legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. with these weekend celebrations, virtual events, and volunteer opportunities. Read on to see how you can get involved!

MLK Weekend Celebrations & Virtual Events


Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service at the National Constitution Center

This Martin Luther King Jr. Day, sign up for a free, live virtual class on the civil rights movement with the National Constitution Center.

Photo credit: @constitutionctr

For the week of January 18, college students can explore the civil rights movement; the Warren Court; and landmark laws enacted by Congress like the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.


Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Symposium on Social Change at Penn AARC

Each year during the month of January, the University of Pennsylvania and surrounding communities come together to commemorate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The commemoration reminds us of our interdependence and reaffirms our commitment to the betterment of our communities through civility and service.


Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend at the Museum of the American Revolution

The Museum will honor the life, service, and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. over MLK Weekend.

Photo credit: @amrevmuseum

Join the Museum of the American Revolution in-person and online to discover the ongoing legacy of the American Revolution and learn what it takes to change the world, highlighted by a performance by the Philadelphia Jazz Project.


2021 MLK Weekend Celebration at The African American Museum in Philadelphia

The African American Museum in Philadelphia and Citizens Bank invites audiences to a weekend of enriching, fun, inspirational, family-friendly activities celebrating the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

Photo credit: AAMP Museum

This year’s celebration includes MLK Morning programming for youth and family, a special virtual screening of Shuja Moore’s webseries Walkies, a reading by Philadelphia Poet Laureate Trapeta Mayson, virtual tours of the latest exhibition Rendering Justice, and special MLK keynote with Marking Time author, Nicole Fleetwood.


Martin Luther King Jr. Tribute Concert by The Philadelphia Orchestra

The Philadelphia Orchestra, in partnership with Global Citizen’s Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Day of Service, presents its 31st annual Martin Luther King Jr. Tribute Concert online.

Photo credit: Philadelphia Orchestra

As part of the Our City, Your Orchestra series, the program led by Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin will celebrate the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., through music and interviews with prominent Philadelphians who are continuing Dr. King’s work today.


MLK Day 2021 Volunteer Opportunities


Global Citizen

The national King Day of Service started in Philadelphia as a small project in 1996 with 1,000 volunteers. It has become a fast-growing nationwide movement that has worked to break down barriers, form ongoing partnerships, and foster understanding about the legacy of Dr. King, particularly among young people.

Global Citizen is a non-partisan organization dedicated to promoting civic engagement, community volunteering, civic responsibility, and sustained active citizenship among diverse groups.

How to Serve: Join Global Citizen’s 26th Annual MLK Day of Service by volunteering to take direct action at various city sites, donating goods or funds, registering for a virtual volunteering event, and so much more. Find a volunteer opportunity near you with Global Citizen’s Volunteer Portal.


Uhuru MLK Day Philly 2021

An annual project of Uhuru Furniture and the African People’s Education and Defense Fund (APEDF), Uhuru is building economic self-reliance & carrying on the movement for African self-determination from the ’60s to today.

How to Serve: Join Uhuru for their program on Zoom, and a socially distanced outdoor volunteer project to distribute literature to spread the word about Uhuru Furniture and the APEDF programs.


Ongoing Volunteer Opportunities in Philly


Serve with AmeriCorps

By bringing people together to serve communities, AmeriCorps is making service to others an indispensable part of the American experience.

How to Serve: Join AmeriCorps in their mission to improve your community by finding a volunteer opportunity in your area. Use AmeriCorps’ Volunteer Search tool to filter opportunities by education, advocacy, hunger, social, and more.

Help Your Community During COVID-19: Consider helping neighbors, friends, and families by volunteering from home, becoming a medical volunteer, donating blood, delivering meals to seniors, and more. View AmeriCorps’ full list of ways to support your community during COVID-19 here.


Volunteer with Philly Paws

PAWS is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to saving Philadelphia’s homeless and at-risk pets.

How to Serve: PAWS volunteers care for shelter cats and dogs, assist in facility upkeep and application processing, and more.


Serve with Philabundance

Philabundance is the Delaware Valley’s largest hunger relief organization, acquiring, rescuing, and distributing food to 90,000 people weekly in nine counties in PA and NJ.

Photo credit: @philabundance

How to Serve: Host a virtual food drive, donate to help Philabundance distribute emergency food boxes, and more.

Help Your Community During COVID-19: Consider helping neighbors, friends, and families by volunteering to set up tables and distribute food, work with staff members to package meals and assist in food prep, and more. View Philabundance’s full calendar of opportunities to support your community during COVID-19 here.


Volunteer with Back on My Feet

Join Back on My Feet in their mission to combat homelessness across the country. Back on My Feet recruits individuals at homeless and residential facilities across the country and begins with a member’s commitment to run three days a week in the early morning.

How to Serve: Volunteer to run, work at a water stop, run a training for Back on My Feet members, and more.


Check out even more opportunities from our friends at Young Professionals Council, and follow us on Instagram for the latest updates on ways to serve your region!


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