• MLK Community Center

New LGBTQQ+ Programming ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜🖤🤍🤎


Friday, June 18, 2021


Just in time to announce during Pride month, the MLK Community Center is proud to offer additional LGBTQQ+ community programs! Beginning July 7th, LGBTQQ+ youth are invited to join in our new L.E.A.D. (Love, Equity, Acceptance, Dreams) peer group.

The goal of the L.E.A.D. group, facilitated by those who identify as belonging to this community, is to provide LGBTQQ+ youth with a safe place to discuss challenges and ask questions, and empower them to embrace their authentic selves - whatever that looks like for them. The group will serve as a collaborative environment and currently has no rigid structure so that it may adapt to the needs of group members. Beginning July 7th, this group will meet every Wednesday at 3 pm at the MLK Community Center. No RSVPs are necessary - feel free to join us at any time. For more information, contact Mirasia at the Center: (401) 846-4828 x201 or

Facebook event

Además, el AIDS Project of Rhode Island (APRI) ofrece pruebas de VIH / Hep C gratuitas, confiables y confidenciales a la comunidad del condado de Newport, ahora de manera regular y recurrente en el Centro Comunitario de MLK. Cada 1er y 3er jueves de cada mes, APRI facilitará las pruebas en el sitio en el Centro de 12 pm a 2 pm. Las próximas fechas son el 1 de julio y el 15 de julio (Facebook event). Para una cita, comuníquese con APRI al (401) 831-5522 o

En la imagen: Mirasia Cassese (izquierda) y Melanie Saunders (derecha), miembros del personal de MLK, participaron en la ceremonia de izado de la bandera del Orgullo el 11 de junio en el Ayuntamiento de Newport.

¡Ven a visitarnos! El Centro tendrá presencia en Newport Out's Pride Market & Festival at Equality Park el sábado 26 de junio de 11 a 15 h. Pase por la mesa de MLK para conocer cualquiera de estos programas (y más), y pase por la mesa de APRI para obtener más información también sobre las pruebas gratuitas de VIH / Hep C!


Father's Day is this Sunday, June 20th

Throughout the week, MLK Preschool students made cards and picture frames to give to the special men in their lives this weekend. To all the dads, step-dads, grandpas, father figures, mentors, foster fathers, and uncles in our MLK family, we wish you a very happy Father's Day!


Class teaches MLK kids mindfulness and simple yoga techniques

Check out this clip of Miss Judy (Judy Hall) and Miss Lisa (Lisa Cecchi), instructors of our Story & Stretch program, leading Preschool students through an adorable song that employs simple yoga techniques.

"Story & Stretch" is a program for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Center Preschoolers to learn techniques of mindfulness, simple yoga poses to get kids moving, and encourage children's mind/body connection. Physical activities are accompanied by literature and an activity. This program is Powered by Prince - made possible thanks to the generosity of Newport Hospital's Frederick Henry Prince Memorial Fund.

An adaptation of this class, named "Peaceful Warriors Powered by Prince," will return to MLK Education programs throughout the summertime. Led by Miss Judy Hall (MLK Community Center Imagination Library Coordinator) and Miss Jenny Williams (of Pennfield School), this class will teach Preschool students as well as rising Kindergarten - 2nd grade Summer Campers mindfulness, movement, yoga, and literacy along with journaling for emotional-awareness for the older students. This program too is generously Powered by Prince.


TODAY, Friday, June 18th from 2 pm to 5:30 pm, stop by the MLK for a free COVID-19 vaccination clinic, presented in partnership with Matt's Local Pharmacy. This clinic is open to all adults 18+. ID required; please bring proof of health insurance if you have it. No appointments necessary. The single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be administered.

All participants will receive a free supermarket gift card! Spanish-speaking staff will be on-site for assistance. See you soon!


Parents: have you received the Zoom link for this coming Thursday, June 24th's Preschool graduation ceremony!? A brief virtual Preschool graduation ceremony will be held via Zoom on Thursday, 6/24 at 12:45 pm. Please ask your child's teacher for the handout with the URL / QR code. To save yourself time the day-of, please make sure you're registered for a Zoom account in advance. We will have a projector set up so students can look out and see family members via Zoom "in the audience" so please plan to have your cameras on & microphones muted! Email or call with any questions: (401) 846-4828 x115

UNITEDHEALTHCARE DISH LIQUID DONATION: Our friends at UnitedHealthcare recently held a staff donation drive to generate donations of dish liquid for the MLK's food pantries. The Center's posts about food pantry needs really resonated with Jennifer Barros (pictured, front), who spearheaded the initiative among her UnitedHealthcare colleagues. Yesterday, Jennifer Barros (front), Mike Florczyk (left), and Renee Volpe (middle) of UHC stopped for a photo with MLK Director of Development Alyson Novick (right) when they dropped off their incredible donation — a whopping 92 bottles, or 176 lbs, of dish liquid. This contribution will go far in stocking the Center's food pantries with this household essential for weeks and weeks to come. Thank you!

JOIN OUR TEAM: The MLK Community Center is hiring for a variety of employment opportunities!

  • Hunger Services Assistant (part-time, permanent)

  • Front Desk Administrator (full-time, permanent)

  • Summer Program Teacher (part-time, seasonal)

  • Summer Camp Counselors (part-time, seasonal)

  • Preschool Assistant Teacher (part-time, permanent) To apply or learn more, please visit the Center's Indeed profile (also accessible through the 'Join Our Team' tab on our website).

FOOD PANTRY FEATURE: We're in need of low-sodium foods

This month's "Food Pantry Feature" is low-sodium foods. We know: this is a pretty broad category of foods, but the demand in our pantry is great.

Have you been there? Your doctor reviews your lab report and tells you to reduce your salt intake ... immediately. For many of us, lifestyle changes like this are challenging enough on their own. But combatting food insecurity on top of that? What would you do if access to low sodium foods wasn't possible?

That's where the MLK comes in. Low-sodium foods are among our most-requested items. Many seniors in our Food 2 Friends program follow a sodium-restricted diet, as well as so many others that we see at our Mobile Food Pantries and on-site food pantry. For those who have or are at risk of kidney disease, heart disease, high blood pressure, or simply anyone trying to adopt a healthier lifestyle, low sodium foods are essential.

Are you able to donate some low sodium foods throughout the remainder of the month? We need items like: low sodium soups, canned beans, canned vegetables, diced tomatoes, etc. You can also look for low sodium packaged rice & stovetop pasta dishes, low sodium spice mixes... really anything that says "Low Sodium" or "No Salt" on the packaging! We accept donations of non-perishable food, fresh produce, household cleaning and personal care items at our loading dock Monday - Friday 8:30 am – 5:00 pm. Thank you!

When you give, the MLK can keep helping. Click here to donate.

HERE TO HELP View all: Google Calendar / Facebook events Volunteers wanted! The MLK is currently seeking Volunteer Cooks to prepare meals for our Breakfast program. You don't have to be a morning person either, you can meal prep in advance! If you're interested in volunteering with us, please fill out an online volunteer application. Online registration is open: You can now register for Zumba, "Toning in '21," Yoga, and Sabores Latinos online! With this system, you can conveniently register, reschedule, and cancel appointments at your convenience. We suggest you make an account for easy account management (after you sign up for your first class, it will prompt you). If you aren't able to register online, you are always able to contact Mel via email or by phone to register: (401) 846-4828. Facebook Groups: We've recently opened two private Facebook groups: one group for Parents & Families of MLK Students, and one group for MLK Community Center Volunteers. Please join the conversation! (Parents: we've been sharing reminders, registration links for MLK family events, and the Preschool Graduation Zoom link!)

  • Grab & Go Breakfast Mon-Fri, 7:30 - 8:30 am. (Marcus Wheatland Blvd entrance)

  • Food Pantry: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 am to 2 pm and Wednesday evenings from 4 pm to 6 pm; first Saturday of each month from 10 am to 12 pm

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

  • Mobile Food Pantry visits to communities throughout Newport County. Schedule