OXFORD, Miss. (WTVA) — For the second year in a row, the group Volunteer Oxford teamed up with community partners on Martin Luther King Junior Day in Lafayette County to hold a free event.
The National Day of Service honors a legacy by having volunteers help mentor the next generation.
Giving up a few hours of their time in an effort to strengthen their community is something volunteers felt inspired to do.
"Martin Luther King National Day of Service -- the way you're supposed to look at it is it's not a day off. It's a day to do something positive," said Erin Mauffray, volunteer.
"With Martin Luther King Junior Day, you think about civil rights and all the struggles and all the battles that went on then," added Brittany Galloway, volunteer. "But when you come and play with the kids and you realize they don't have that same perception, I guess they're just happy and they have fun."
Realizing the importance of sharing and preserving history are reasons why some people look to keep King's dream of opportunity for all alive.
"To me, this is a great day so that the students will know about their history," said Santricia Dowdy, volunteer. "Also, I feel that it's to give back to the community."
In an effort to get as many volunteers as possible from the community, organizers with the MLK Day of Service called on volunteers of all ages to come forward and donate their time and services.
"I think when you open up and communicate with the community the need that there are people of all ages will respond," added Kelly Graeber, Volunteer Oxford Director. "We even had retirees and seniors helping us prep for this day of service."
For those that volunteered regardless of age, they all said the benefits were well worth the time spent.
"Volunteering is a great way to get to know your community," added Megan Rua, volunteer, "meet new people, see faces you wouldn't necessarily see all the time."
"Even just learning about black history that you don't get in every classroom that you don't get at every school or even at home," said Tia Trotter, volunteer.
"It's a great opportunity to meet people, to see the town and just see something positive on a regular basis," added Mauffray.
Through their example of service, they hope more people will follow their path.
The three-hour event at the Oxford Activities Center was free and open to anyone in the community.