Nashville students volunteer for MLK day of service

Posted at 8:12 PM, Jan 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-18 21:12:32-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Nearly a dozen Nashville colleges and universities are spreading kindness for their Martin Luther King day tradition.

Although it has to be virtually this year because of the pandemic, students tell us the message remains the same.

Participating schools include TSU, Fisk University, Meharry Medical College, Belmont University, Trevecca Nazarene, Lipscomb University, Vanderbilt University, and Nashville State Community College.

Altogether about 300 people are participating.

In previous years, students would meet up at one of their schools before being bused to different locations throughout the city to volunteer.

This year, students are giving back virtually.

After listening to guest speakers online, students will write letters and words of encouragement to local seniors and students.

"A handwritten note is especially meaningful to let them know someone is thinking about them and cares about them its a nice touch we lost sometimes in modern era," said Tim Stewart, Belmont University's Director of Service-Learning.

Given the racial and political tensions that happened during the last year, organizers say this is a great way to put that aside and show solidarity.

"Especially this year, in the middle of COVID and we've seen a lot of things going on in the news, although we know racism and bias occurs but today is a day about hope, inspiration, and encouraging our students by writing these letters and spreading message of nonviolence," Dr. Natara Garvin, Associate Provost for Student Affairs at Fisk University.

This year students worked with these four nonprofit organizations: Greater Nashville Regional Council, Turnip Green Creative Reuse, Robert Churchwell Museum Magnet Elementary, and Project Transformation.