Guest Blogger: Kristin Hutchins
Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. This day in history always opens my eyes to the importance of community building. This is exactly what Martin Luther King Jr. did for so many. He was so great at giving back without asking for anything in return.
In the period between 1957 and 1968, King traveled over six million miles and spoke over twenty-five hundred times, appearing wherever there was injustice, protest, and action; and meanwhile he wrote five books as well as numerous articles. In these years, he led a massive protest in Birmingham, Alabama, that caught the attention of the entire world, providing what he called a coalition of conscience. and inspiring his "Letter from a Birmingham Jail", a manifesto of the Negro revolution; he planned the drives in Alabama for the registration of Negroes as voters; he directed the peaceful march on Washington, D.C., of 250,000 people to whom he delivered his address, "l Have a Dream", he conferred with President John F. Kennedy and campaigned for President Lyndon B. Johnson; he was arrested upwards of twenty times and assaulted at least four times; he was awarded five honorary degrees; was named Man of the Year by Time magazine in 1963; and became not only the symbolic leader of American blacks but also a world figure.
At the age of thirty-five, Martin Luther King, Jr., was the youngest man to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. When notified of his selection, he decided to turn over the prize money of $54,123 and put it towards the civil rights movement.
This type of community building is what changes the world and what nonprofit organizations are here for. Our goal is to make a difference in the world in a big way and look up to individuals such as Martin Luther. Take a second, sometime today, and think of a way that you can make a difference in the world. "Faith is taking the first step even when you can't see the whole staircase." - Martin Luther King Jr.