“Building a future, together” are the words of the 14th Street Community Center and for Martin Luther King Jr weekend, it means all the more.
To honor King’s commitment to civil rights progression, the 14th Street’s annual events begin Saturday, at the Friends of SOMC Community Room. The breakfast will kick-start the weekend that will eventually culminate in the Performing Arts Program Monday evening.
At the breakfast, for the first time, recipients of the scholarships will be announced. Currently 14th street awards four $2,000 donations, but Maureen Cadogan, MLK Chair hopes they will grow into even more scholarships. A former recipient and a local author will be in attendance to introduce this year’s scholarship winners.
For more than 30 years Cadogan explained they have annually held the series of event.
“It is vital to educate and empowering new generations,” Cadogan said. “14th Street is a way to aid at risk youth and give them all the help they need to be the best they can be. King had a dream, any of these kids can too.”
The chair said it’s an integral part of growth to understand where people come from. She spoke of the quote made famous by the philosopher and poet George Santayana,
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
The organization originally formed in the 40s as a way to provide recreational activities to the youth residing within the Farley Square Housing Project. Overtime, the organization has grown with the community. It now serves more than 1,200 individuals offering free educational and healthy recreational activities.
The core values of 14th Street mirror those of King; compassion, respect, and trust are just a few.
Cadogan continued that they have and will continue to educate the youth on King’s impact in his time, as well as his lasting legacy. She wants those of today to learn and understand just how his work translates to the 21st century.
“This structured educational endeavor mainly takes place during the Monday workshop. The weekend is dedicated to his works and there is much to learn,” Cardogan said..
On Sunday there is a silent march. The event will begin at Shawnee State University and conclude at the Kingdom Builders Evangelistic church. Through the weekend, recipients of the scholarships will read their essays.
Other events of the weekend include a memorial service following the silent march where winning essays will be read. A winter picnic will also be held between the workshop and arts performance Monday.
“14th Streets wants to be a blessing to disadvantaged youth in the area,” Cadogan said.
The breakfast jump-starts the weekend’s events at 9 a.m. Saturday with giveaways such as 2020 MLK calendars. Tickets are available and will be available at the door. More information can be found on the 14th Street Community Center’s Facebook page.
Reach Bailey Watts (740) 353-3101 Ext 1931
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