Proudly marching behind AHRC Nassau’s banner, members of the AHRC community joined neighbors to celebrate the life and legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the 39th Annual City of Glen Cove MLK Commission March and Commemorative Program.
The event is the longest-running, continuous march and program held in honor of Dr. King and his contributions to justice and equality. For members of the AHRC Nassau community, remembering how the civil rights movement advanced disability rights made the event particularly meaningful.
More than 100 marchers walked on the chilly January morning from the First Baptist Church in Glen Cove to the Wunsch Arts Center at Finley Middle School. Along the route, event organizer Sheryl Goodine led the progression with civil rights songs, including “Oh Freedom” and “We Shall Not Be Moved.” Once at the middle school, the celebratory program included remarks from Pamela Panzenbeck, Mayor, City of Glen Cove; Rev. Roger C. Williams, Pastor, First Baptist Church of Glen Cove; Dr. Maria Rianna, Superintendent of Schools, Glen Cove City School District, as well as Matt Hofele, AHRC Nassau community member and self-advocate.
From the podium, Hofele shared the impact of Dr. King on his life and advocated, “My dream is for everyone to be aware that we all have the same rights and deserve to be treated equal and with equal opportunities because nobody is better than anyone else.”
Hofele also encouraged attendees to “think of ways we can honor Dr. King with a commitment to the community and service by volunteering. No one should have to worry about not having enough food for their next meal.”
At the Glen Cove MLK Commission event, attendees were encouraged to bring canned goods as AHRC Nassau kicked off its annual Dream Project. Made possible in part by a grant from The Arc of the United States, this inclusive volunteer initiative is inspired by Dr. King’s dedication to community action and offers opportunities throughout the year to support neighbors facing food insecurity.
As a result of the day of service, two vans of donations were collected and sent to the food pantry, NOSH Delivers, based in Glen Cove.
Join AHRC Nassau’s Dream Project. To volunteer time or make a donation, please visit ahrc.org/dream.