Released: January 15, 2023
“Highlights from Delaware County’s 2nd annual MLK Day of Service.”
Delaware County was proud to host Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro during the 2nd Annual Delaware County MLK Day of Service on January 15 in Chester.
The County partnered with Widener University, the Philadelphia Union, the Downtown Cultural Arts and Technology (CAAT) Center, and America250PADelco to host the Day of Service which included community building activities created to foster unity, sense of purpose, and shared responsibility among residents.
The morning began with a dedication at Widener University and featured impactful remarks from Dr. Marina Barnett, Interim Assistant Provost for Civic Engagement at Widener University; Stacey Robertson, President of Widener University; Micki Davis, Widener University’s Chief Diversity Officer; Rachel Ocran, Widener Scholar, and State Senator John Kane. Delaware County Council Vice Chair Richard Womack presented a resolution, recognizing January 15, 2024, as a day to honor the spirit and legacy of Dr. King throughout the county.
Following the dedication, hundreds of community members participated in a peace march from Widener University, through downtown Chester, ending at Chester City Hall, where State Representative Carol Kazeem, Chester City Mayor Stefan Roots, and Chester City Council members spoke to the crowd, thanking them for joining the celebration.
The Day of Service continued with a clean up around areas of Chester City Hall and Memorial Park. Dozens of members from the Philadelphia Union joined residents and elected leaders, including State Representative Leanne Krueger and her son, to clean up debris in Memorial Park.
The afternoon included a visit from Governor Shapiro at the Downtown CAAT Center, where he spoke with dozens of Chester residents and Widener students and joined CAAT Center President Tara Jones, Delaware County Council Chair Dr. Monica Taylor, and Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon on stage to honor and celebrate Dr. King. The Governor also joined Delaware County Council members, Widener students, and residents to create artwork that will be displayed in Chester and filled warming kits that will be distributed to residents in need.
The conclusion of Delaware County’s MLK Day of Service was marked by an evening poetry slam, where residents enthusiastically shared and listened to heartfelt and imaginative tributes in honor of Dr. King. Hosted by Gweney Love, the night featured improv poetry and an open mic for creatives to share their talent.
Throughout the day, the diverse community of Delaware County, including its residents, students, community partners, and elected leaders, came together to volunteer and engage in meaningful dialogues. These interactions not only help bridge divides, but also contribute to the creation of solutions for pressing social issues, all in pursuit of Dr. King's vision of a united community working towards the greater good.