• MLK Community Center

A Historic Week for the Nation, and for the MLKInbox


Friday, January 22nd, 2021

Martin Luther King Day 2021:

Thank you for your record-breaking support of the Center, in conjunction with the Biden/Harris Inaugural Day of Service

Just as it was a historic week for the Nation, it was also a historic week for the MLK Community Center. This past Monday was Dr. Martin Luther King Day. The Center remained open to provide service in celebration and in honor of our namesake, Dr. King. We celebrated the inauguration of President Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr. and our nation's first female, Black and south Asian Vice President Kamala D. Harris.

On Monday, we held a Drive-Thru Food Drive, an official event of the national Biden/Harris Inaugural Day of Service. A standard food drive brings in about 500 pounds. When the drive is tied to a special event, we hope for about 1,000 pounds. The Inaugural Day of Service Drive-Thru Food Drive coincided with Martin Luther King Day, celebrating our namesake, and brought in FIVE TIMES more than we hoped for: over 5,000 lbs, in just 4 hours. A core group of MLK volunteers and students from Salve Regina University enthusiastically unloaded food from a long line of waiting cars. Clearly, our community felt donating food to the MLK Community Center was a worthy way to celebrate both Dr. King's birthday and the Inauguration and, and we are so grateful.

Also on MLK Day, we held a special festive community Grab 'n Go meal. We contracted with McGrath's Catering to prepare a delicious hot meal of beef stroganoff, pasta, and broccoli with a freshly baked chocolate chip cookie for dessert. A local chalk artist and MLK volunteer drew a portrait of Dr. King outside the Edward Street entrance to celebrate the day.

Students in our education programs also participated in the MLK Day festivities by reading and learning about Dr. King's legacy and by creating artwork and affirmations about what he would want them to do for their classroom and their community.

Voter Registration: Now at Every Food Pantry

The MLK is hosting Voter Registration for the upcoming Special Election at each on-site Food Pantry (Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 10 am to 2 pm) from now until January 31st, the deadline to register for the March 2nd Special Election. We are able to assist clients in Spanish as well as English. This program is in partnership with the Newport Health Equity Zone.

Help when it's needed most:


In the New Year, we have revisited our Food Pantry policies and eliminated limits on many of our staple foods, in an effort to relieve client stress during these daunting times and empower them to make their own food choices. Clients can now choose as much canned veggies, tomatoes and beans, rice, pasta, breakfast cereals, and shelf-stable milk as they need. We have doubled the amount and variety of frozen meat available. During a monthly pantry "shop," clients receive a pork or sausage item, two poultry items, ground beef, and frozen prepared hearty meals and soups for their family. We contrast this to just a few short years ago when often chicken and hot dogs may have been the only frozen meat options available. Clients receive 2-weeks' worth of food during their monthly pantry visit, or enough for 42 meals.

"The extra stimulus money gave us a little extra to share,

and we felt it best spent in our community, by the MLK Center."

- Recent donor, Elizabeth*

Federal stimulus dollars are designed to help Americans struggling with wage losses during the pandemic. Some fortunate people with stable finances are donating a portion or even all of their stimulus payments to the MLK. The Center contracts with local vendors whenever possible, helping put dollars into our regional economy. And, MLK programs offer critical help to our most vulnerable neighbors. We're so grateful to people like Elizabeth who help support a not-for-profit business like the MLK.

*Name changed to protect privacy.


  • Grab-n-Go Breakfast Mon-Fri, 7:30 - 8:30 a.m. (Marcus Wheatland Blvd entrance)

  • Food 2 Friends delivery for homebound seniors. Contact Ed for more info

  • Mobile Food Pantry visits to low-income housing communities

  • Preschool for registered preschool students. Openings currently available for 3 year olds. Contact Tanya by email or by phone: (401) 846-4828 x117

  • After School program for registered students

  • Daily Bread: Mon-Fri at the Marcus Wheatland Blvd entrance, while supplies last

  • On-site food pantry: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Wednesday evenings from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. First Saturday of each month from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

  • AARP Tax Prep: Tentative start date: February 19th; will be in a drop-off format. More details to follow.

  • Veggie Days weekly vegetable distribution outside, Thursdays 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. or while supplies last. Now year-round!

  • Grab 'n Go lunches: Every Tuesday and Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Free! Presented in collaboration with McGrath's Clambakes & Catering. Menu TBD. Eating on-site not permitted. Moved back to Main Entrance on Marcus Wheatland Blvd

  • Toning in '21 Fitness Class: Every Wednesday at 8:30 a.m., this full-body workout aims to improve balance, bone health, flexibility, and strength of participants in a safe, welcoming, and fun environment. All skill-levels welcome. Masks required & space very limited. RSVP with Mel: email or call (401) 846-4828 x124

  • Zumba Fitness Class: Every Thursday morning at 8:30 a.m. Suitable for all skill levels. Masks required & space is very limited. RSVP with Mel: email or call (401) 846-4828 x124

  • LivFit Cooking & Nutrition: LivFit returns to the Center Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 5 p.m. to approximately 6 p.m. RSVPs required with Kristin via email or text (401) 368-7614.

  • Drive Through Recycling Drive: Stop by the MLK Community Center on Saturday, February 20th from 9:00 a.m. to 12 p.m. noon for a drive-up electronics recycling drive, sponsored by Indie Cycle, LLC. List of accepted electronics available here

  • Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, presented by the Bazarsky Family Foundation in partnership with the MLK Community Center, puts books into the hands and hearts of children across the world. They partner with local communities to mail a hand-selected, age-appropriate, high-quality book each month to registered children from birth to age five, completely free of cost & regardless of family income. More info

  • Donations: Donations of non-perishable food, fresh produce, household cleaning and personal care items are accepted at our loading dock Mon-Fri 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Please ring the bell upon arrival. Masks required to donate. A list of our current needs available here.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Center

(401) 846-4828

No temenos la capacidad de traducir cada entrada del blog a español porque usamos una herramienta de traducción en el internet. Por favor, disculpe cualquier error gramática. Por favor, llame al Centro si tiene alguna pregunta.

Una semana histórica para la nación y para el MLK


Viernes 22 de enero de 2021

Día de Martin Luther King 2021:

Gracias por su apoyo sin precedentes al Centro, junto con el Día de servicio inaugural de Biden / Harris.

Así como fue una semana histórica para la Nación, también fue una semana histórica para el Centro Comunitario MLK. El lunes pasado fue el Día del Dr. Martin Luther King. El Centro permaneció abierto para brindar servicio en celebración y en honor a nuestro tocayo, el Dr. King. Celebramos la toma de posesión del presidente Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr. y de la primera mujer de nuestro país, la vicepresidenta negra y del sur de Asia, Kamala D. Harris.

El lunes, llevamos a cabo una colecta de alimentos Drive-Thru, un evento oficial del Día de Servicio Inaugural Nacional Biden / Harris. Una colecta de alimentos estándar genera alrededor de 500 libras. Cuando la campaña está vinculada a un evento especial, esperamos alrededor de 1,000 libras. El Día de Servicio Inaugural Drive-Thru Food Drive coincidió con el Día de Martin Luther King, celebrando nuestro homónimo, y trajo CINCO VECES más de lo que esperábamos: más de 5,000 libras, en solo 4 horas. Un grupo central de voluntarios de MLK y estudiantes de la Universidad Salve Regina descargaron comida con entusiasmo de una larga fila de autos que esperaban. Claramente, nuestra comunidad sintió que donar comida al Centro Comunitario MLK era una forma digna de celebrar tanto el cumpleaños del Dr. King como la Inauguración y estamos muy agradecidos.