A simple act of gratitude: AmeriCorps VISTAs volunteer to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

VISTAs hosted by The Hub gathered virtually to create messages of cheer and gratitude for residents of assisted living centers throughout WV.


Every year, we mark the third Monday of January as Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. In observation of this holiday, Americans are called to mark the occasion by volunteering in their community to honor Dr. King’s legacy. This year, things look a little different. We cannot gather in person to serve our community, so through some creative brainstorming, our VISTA members identified a service project to brighten up the days of community members who could be struggling with isolation. 

A beautiful card made by AmeriCorps VISTA member Amy Chandler (Community Housing Action Partnership) during our service project.

We gathered on Zoom and spent time together making cards for residents in assisted living facilities across West Virginia. During this time, we reflected on the meaning of connecting with community members in unique ways during these COVID times, and on the legacy Dr. King left behind. 

During our time together, we made cards with cheerful messages to comfort those living in assisted living facilities, reminding them that they’re not alone in this. Our VISTAs wrote messages of gratitude to community members, and shared some of their favorite inspiring quotes. 

We’re up to just about 50 cards done, and counting! It is our hope that these messages will reassure our neighbors that they are not alone. We will continue to make cards over the coming days, in hopes of distributing at four facilities.

If you have some time, and want to spread some cheer, you can send cards until February 5, and we will pass them along to facilities across the state. Mail cards to:

WV Community Development Hub
Attn: Erin Susman 
424A Shrewsbury Street 
Charleston WV 25301

Positive messages written by AmeriCorps VISTA Member Jon Olsen (City of Shinnston) in one of his cards.

Erin Susman is The Hub’s Operations and VISTA Program Manager. You can reach her at e.susman@wvhub.org.

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

More to explore

How to Host First Friday Events in Your Community

Are you working to bring energy into your community? Do you want to see more people in your downtown spaces? Are there a number of local craftspeople, artists, farmers, and other entrepreneurs in your region that you’d like to bring together?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *