MARYSVILLE — While the pandemic has canceled countless community traditions, one Marysville leader gathered about two dozen people Monday to honor Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy through an act of service.
“One way to be able to keep Dr. King’s dream alive is working together and being able to serve others,” said JJ Frank, executive director of the Marysville YMCA.
In the 40-degree fog outside the YMCA building, students from Marysville Pilchuck and Marysville Getchell high schools, leaders from LINC Northwest’s family resource hub, Marysville YMCA staff and Marysville Fire District personnel assembled care packages for seniors, survivors of domestic violence and those experiencing housing insecurity.
“We all have things going on in our lives right now,” said Josiah Frank, Black Student Union president at Marysville Pilchuck High School. “But there’s still a lot of people that have even less, that are really just unfortunate right now. Especially with COVID and the new variants, people are more distant than they ever have been before. So just giving something to tell them that they’re wanted and that someone cares for them is really important.”
Volunteers made 52 bags of snacks, puzzles and handmade cards for residents at the Grandview Village senior living facility, who have been mostly isolated for the past 18 months. Kids from the YMCA’s child care sites made cards for the seniors, some adorned with drawings of butterflies and sunshine. Many of the cards were addressed to “grandma” or “grandpa.”
Participants also filled 20 bags with hygiene products, food and stuffed animals for survivors of domestic violence. Those bags were given to Marysville police to keep in their cars, as part of a program initiated by LINC Northwest in the fall.
“I think one of our goals when we go to a domestic violence call … is to provide some sort of aid to our victims,” Marysville officer Dave Vasconi told volunteers.
Frank said he’s hoping a Marysville Martin Luther King Jr. day of service can continue for years to come.
“Dr. King was calling us to continue that work of partnership,” said Ryan Brown, executive director of LINC Northwest. “… What does it look like for us to be a people for each other instead of a people against each other? This is one way that we can show that affection and show that meaning to our community and not just in the project, but in the aftermath, or in the legacy of the project.”
Isabella Breda: 425-339-3192; email@example.com. Twitter: @BredaIsabella.
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