|Palmetto, Florida, December 6, 2013 – The Early Learning Coalition (ELC) of Manatee County, Inc. has been awarded a $6,538 grant from the State College of Florida to participate in the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service to be held between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm on January 20, 2014. The MLK Day of Service is part of a community-wide initiative that will include a variety of events intended to recognize Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy. The Early Learning Coalition of Manatee County’s contribution to the event will involve the promotion of Dr. King’s values of a collaborative community, non-violence, racial and social equality through volunteerism and the distribution of age-appropriate books to children that embody Dr. King’s values and diversity. The Coalition’s goals are: 1) to promote children and youth’s understanding of the Dr. King’s values and exemplary legacy; 2) to encourage parents and family members to read to their children; to provide children with their own book and teach them about helping others through non-violence and the example of Dr. King; and 3) to foster service learning among the youth that volunteer.
An estimated 85 community volunteers will help to distribute approximately 2,500 books between in both Bradenton and Palmetto. The Braden River High School Key Club’s volunteers will distribute books at the Desoto Square Mall in Bradenton. The Educational Consultant Consortium will distribute books at the Palmetto Youth Center, as part of the MLK Parade, and at their library. The City of Bradenton’s Central Community Redevelopment Agency will distribute books at the Rogers Elementary Community Gardens project, whereas the youth will receive the books in a garden bucket to accompany the hand shovels.
The Early Learning Coalition of Manatee County, Inc. is a multi-service agency dedicated to helping children develop skills that they will need to be successful in school and life. The agency’s focus is on high quality school readiness opportunities for all children and their families, understanding that it is in the first years of life that a child’s future educational success is determined and the critical role of parents, as their child’s first and most important teacher. To learn more about Coalition’s services, go to www.elc-manatee.org or call 941-757-2900.