January 28, 2023

Recognizing MLK Day 2023

As a sponsor of the Acts of Kindness,” celebration on January 16, 2023, in honor of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at the Newark Museum of Art, Jewish Community Relations Council donated 1,500 sets of hats and gloves for our neighbors in need. Thank you to our volunteer team of Federation staff and families, Big Brothers Big Sisters with their Smalls and families (and a cute canine, Tucker!), for help preparing the bags. 

As a communal effort overall, “Acts of Kindness” served more than 2,000 people!  The hats and gloves were distributed at the museum and then through the Newark Water Coalition with eight locations across the city. In addition, the collection at the museum yielded over 800 pounds of food, 70 coats, 400 blankets, free Covid and flu shots, and much more. We were so proud to be part of this effort. 

While at the celebration, JCRC’s welcome table hosted a community art project: a weaving station with two looms for museum goers to create a collaborative tapestry made of the unique fabric of the community intentionally woven to create something greater. People of all ages and backgrounds joined to intertwine a composite of togetherness and solidarity. The energy and excitement from the crowd about this project was full of hope and gratitude.

One of the tapestries will hang in the Newark Museum of Art’s collection highlighting Jewish Federation’s involvement, and the other will be on display in our Federation offices.    

Meanwhile, many community volunteers chose to honor the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by participating in our Center for Volunteerism’s Mitzvah of the Moment: Winter Items Collection. Through this effort, we were able to provide nearly 500 cold-weather kits and much-needed winter gear to help local community members in need stay warm this winter!