Inspired by the remarkable Teddy Roosevelt speech, “The Man in the Arena,” Jean and Steve Case kicked off 2017 and the 20th Anniversary year of the Case Foundation with a call for active citizen engagement and urged all to “Get In The Arena.” As we prepare to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday and many look for volunteer opportunities, Roosevelt’s words resonated with me as Dr. King emphasized a citizen’s crucial role in society. Looking back at Dr. King’s legacy, one of his “arenas” was community service. For, “Life’s most persistent question is: What are you doing for others?” Dr. King and President Roosevelt shared a passion for putting citizens at the center to best serve the community and affect positive social change. So, for this year’s MLK Day, we encourage you to #GetInTheArena by participating in a day of service.

Ever since its founding in 1994, millions of Americans have used the MLK Day holiday as a day on, instead of a day off. This Monday, January 16th, we invite you to enter the arena with us in celebration of the great Dr. King and serve in honor of his legacy of service and dedication to civic engagement.

Here are a few ways to Get In The Arena on MLK Day:

  • Find an MLK Day event in your community by visiting the MLK Day National Service Website or filtering your zip code and area of interest at Volunteer Match.
  • If you are in the Washington, DC area like us, you can find many opportunities for service in an easy to read format here!
  • If you cannot volunteer on the 16th, host an “America’s Sunday Supper,” inspired by Dr. King’s hospitality of inviting people from diverse backgrounds to sit around the same table for a meal. Invite friends, family and neighbors to discuss the power of engagement in your community. Pledge to host a supper and receive Points of Light’s conversation guides here.
  • Join City Year and help make a local school a better place to learn. (Sorry, swaggy red City Year jacket not included.)
  • Impact a young person’s life by volunteering at a Service Works Bootcamp to teach youth workforce skills—such as resume building, interview skills, networking and more. See how to get involved in your city.
  • Get fresh air by volunteering at a local watershed or park trash cleanup.

How are you planning to #GetInTheArena and serve this MLK Day? Be a part of the conversation around service and share your volunteer experiences with us on Twitter by tagging @CaseFoundation and using #GetInTheArena.