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MLK Day of Service draws hundreds of volunteers in Joliet

Projects included making blankets out of plastic bags for the homeless, Valentines for veterans

In a spirited gesture to honor the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., hundreds of volunteers congregated to perform service projects throughout the city of Joliet. Projects included making blankets out of plastic bags for the homeless, Valentines for veterans, taking down Christmas decorations, painting and updating community buildings.

"I never really get to do community service like that," said volunteer Libby Voss. "I was excited that I had the chance to do it."

Voss, who is a middle school student, said one thing she enjoyed about the day was doing the service with some of her friends, while also meeting new people.

The event kicked off in the Joliet Central High School Student Center where breakfast was provided and donated by Great American Bagel, Home Cut Donuts, and Jitters Coffee House.

What followed the breakfast was each family, business or organization was designated a spot throughout the community to participate in service and went to their area to start volunteering.

Throughout the day, Voss said the service she most enjoyed was making the blankets out of plastic bags for the homeless, as she wanted to do anything she could for those who are less fortunate.

Voss, who said in the past she felt like she wasn't as active in the community as she wanted to be, wanted a chance to improve the city in any way that she could.

When she heard about the opportunity, there wasn't a second thought in her mind.

"I felt like it was important because it was a way for me to pitch in and help my community any possible why I could," Voss said. "It was a lot better being productive on my day off than just sitting at home doing nothing."

One person who was not surprised by Voss taking initiative to help improve her community was Libby's mother.

As this was on a volunteer basis that included several hundred businesses, organizations and families helping, Libby's mother said she has always known that her daughter has enjoyed helping out the less fortunate.


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