Santa Clarita celebrates MLK with day of service

The city of Santa Clarita and Human Relations Roundtable present the inaugural MLK Service Celebration. Screenshot

Santa Clarita Valley’s children and teens joined the Santa Clarita City Council and Human Relations Roundtable Monday in celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and service to others, as part of the city’s inaugural MLK Service Celebration.

The video program was live streamed on the MLK holiday Monday, and included various video submissions from SCV residents, who began the video by reciting King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech.

Residents went on to share their own dreams for the future, including Valencia High School freshman Johnny Collier, who shared that he hopes to see the country united rather than divided.

“I think that we should do what’s best for the many instead of the individual,” Collier said. “and I think that we should lift each other up instead of putting each other down.”

Valencia High School freshman Johnny Collier participates in the inaugural MLK Service Celebration. Screenshot

Christina Paz Arguello, a junior at Golden Valley High School, echoed Collier’s sentiments in her dreams for the future.

“Living in such a turbulent time, indifference for social injustice has become a national epidemic; however, this is a treatable condition,” she said, “and it is my fervent hope for the future to be part of the change that the political system so drastically needs.”

Jim Ventress, who served as the chief professional officer of the Boys & Girls Club of SCV for more than 30 years, then shared some of King’s history and the actions that made him the heart of the civil rights movement before residents shared what King means to them.

Santa Clarita Mayor Bill Miranda participates in the inaugural MLK Service Celebration. Screenshot

The MLK holiday was created not only to celebrate King’s life and accomplishments, but also as a national day of service, Cherise Moore, co-chair of the Human Relations Roundtable and Hart District board president, explained.

“This day of service empowers individuals to strengthen their communities and to move us closer to Dr. King’s vision of a brighter future,” Moore added. “Dr. King believed in the power of service, he said, ‘Everybody can be great because everybody can serve.’ Observing the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday by serving is a way to begin each year with a commitment to make Santa Clarita a better place.” 

Residents can visit to download a checklist of Acts of Kindness and Service that can be performed in the community.

Residents participating can track their progress and share their endeavors with the city on social media using the #MLKinSCV hashtag, with photos and videos of themselves, sharing how Dr. King’s legacy impacts their daily life.

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