Stockton’s Dr. Martin Luther King Day of Service Is Region’s Largest

For Immediate Release

Contact:         Maryjane Briant
                        News and Media Relations Director
                        Galloway, N.J. 08205
                        (609) 652-4593

Galloway, N.J. - Community volunteers will join Stockton University students, administrators, faculty, alumni and staff during Dr. Martin Luther King Day of Service on Monday, Jan. 16, 2017, with projects in Atlantic, Cape May and Ocean counties. Nearly 1,000 volunteers turned out for the 2016 event, and organizers hope to break that record at what has become South Jersey’s largest MLK event.

“Dedication to service is one of Stockton’s founding missions - a shared passion that has grown the university’s Dr. Martin Luther King Day of Service into the region’s largest such event,” said President Harvey Kesselman. “Dr. King’s question: ‘What are you doing for others?’ is an integral part of the curriculum here. Our students gain valuable experience and also give back while working on community-based projects, and our faculty and staff offer their time and expertise to many groups and agencies, not only on MLK Day of Service, but all throughout the year.”

The president and First Lady Lynne Kesselman will be among the volunteers serving food at the Atlantic City Rescue Mission, 2009 Bacharach Blvd. Volunteers will assist with a variety of tasks around the mission including: serving lunch, painting, cleaning and organizing donations.

Stockton students and other volunteers also will man the Hopeful Grounds coffee shop at the mission. Hopeful Grounds is a “pay-what-you-can” café which is otherwise open to the community on Tuesdays-Wednesdays-Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.  Community volunteers will meet first in the Campus Center in Galloway for transport to Atlantic City.

Other volunteers may choose which activity and location in each county are most convenient for them after first checking in at the corresponding Stockton location. They will need to provide their own transportation to Manahawkin, Hammonton and Woodbine projects. Volunteers can register that day – but pre-registration is preferred. 

To pre-register and to see a full list of service projects, visit Participants also are encouraged to use the hashtag #StocktonMLK when posting about the experience on twitter and Facebook.                                          

In Galloway, the day begins with registration, breakfast and project selection at 8 a.m. in the Campus Center, with a choice of projects including:

  • Learning about sustainable gardening and skills, then participating in a planting project;
  • Joining members of the Alpha Phi Omega fraternity to paint positive messages on rocks to be placed around Stockton, aimed at starting discussions on the importance of mental health;
  • Working with students and faculty and staff from Books Without Borders to assist in transporting boxes from campus storage to shipping containers. The books will be going to schools in Zimbabwe in the spring. Note: Lifting items up to 40 pounds may be required;                                                                                          
  • Making toys, arts and crafts and hand-written personal messages for Syrian children living under siege or in refugee camps, in cooperation with the Narenj Tree Foundation;
  • Making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, children’s dolls, door hangers and greeting cards for a variety of agencies, working with the Circle K Club, a student group affiliated with Kiwanis;
  • Joining a discussion on feminism and the Women’s March on Washington with the Coalition of Women’s Rights and Civic Rights;
  • A workshop on addiction as a disease, followed by outreach program in Galloway to distribute bags that dissolve prescription drugs for proper disposal. Note: Content may not be appropriate for young children;
  • Writing letters of support on behalf of victims of illegal detention, torture and other human rights abuses, part of Amnesty International’s annual “Write for Rights” campaign;
  • Training for hands-only CPR;
  • Learning how to prepare federal and state income taxes, with the opportunity of being part of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program in 2017;
  • Visiting a traveling exhibit of the African American Heritage Museum of Southern New Jersey in the Campus Center.

In Hammonton: Registration, breakfast and project selection begins at 8 a.m. All activities begin from Kramer Hall, 30 Front St., Hammonton, N.J.

  • Learning CPR, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and receiving other training and certification from the Galloway Township Ambulance at Kramer Hall;
  • Making Valentine cards for the residents of the local Greenbriar Nursing Center;
  • Helping Allies in CARING, Inc., which advocates for culturally responsive mental health services for diverse populations, to type information into their database. This project will take place at 425 N. Third St. in Hammonton;
  • Assisting staff from Noyes Museum of Art of Stockton University, with the organization of museum archives. This project will take place on the third floor of Hammonton Town Hall, 100 E. Central Ave. in Hammonton.

In Weekstown for Alumni: The alumni site for Day of Service is the South Jersey All Breeds Horse Rescue in Weekstown, N.J. This organization is dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and sanctuary of unwanted, neglected and abused horses. Volunteers will be asked to work on a variety of outdoor projects beginning at 9:30 a.m. and ending at 2 p.m.      

In Manahawkin:  Registration, breakfast and project selection begins at 8 a.m. All activities are located at 712 E. Bay Ave, Manahawkin, N.J.

  • Collecting “necessity items” such as socks, wipes and toothbrushes to create bags for community members or students;
  • Assembling nutritional one-bag meals that include a recipe;
  • Making covers to protect turtle nests and by-catch reduction devices, with Project Terrapin/the Marine Academy of Technology and Environmental Science (MATES.)

The Manahawkin location is also offering free technical help with personal electronic devices such as cell phones, laptops, tablets and e-readers from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. Call (609)-626-3883 to reserve a free, 30-minute appointment.

In Woodbine:  Registration and breakfast will begin at Stockton’s Sam Azeez Museum of Woodbine Heritage, 610 Washington Ave, Woodbine, N.J. Students from Bridgeton High School and the AARP will be making Valentine’s Day cards for residents of the Woodbine Developmental Center.  The students will also be helping with transcribing information. Community volunteers are welcome.