President Jimmy Carter, Bernice King and Civil Rights Leaders Join in Conversation about Education, Youth and 'I Have a Dream' Speech - Aug 15, 2013
ATLANTA, Aug. 15 /CSRwire/ - President Jimmy Carter joined America’s Sunday Supper Sunday night in Atlanta to discuss how the education and service sectors, parents and communities-at-large can collaborate to help youth achieve their dreams. Sponsored by Points of Light, Target and the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change, this event was the kick-off for the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. It was hosted at the Carter Presidential Center by Bernice A. King, Dr, King’s youngest daughter and former president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
President Carter and other speakers shared memories of Dr. King and what MLK Day and the March’s upcoming anniversary this month mean to them. Delores Morton, president of Programs for Points of Light, and Laysha Ward, president of Community Relations for Target, shared the vision for America’s Sunday Suppers – a national movement that promotes bringing people together in service, dialogue and civic engagement while sharing a meal.
Bernice King led a discussion panel that included the Rev. C.T. Vivian, a civil rights deputy of Dr. King’s who just last week was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom; Dr. Dione Simon, principal of Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy; and Doug Shipman, chief operating officer of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights Partnership. The panelists spoke passionately about strides made and remaining challenges since the March on Washington. Each articulated that parents, schools, teachers and communities must be vigilant in making learning exciting and in motivating young people to stay in school.
Those themes were reiterated as more than 140 guests engaged in table conversations around the theme Education, Youth and the “I Have a Dream” speech. Some of the noteworthy table hosts providing highlights to the crowd were basketball great Dikembe Mutumbo and Clark Atlanta University President Dr. Carlton E. Brown. Eight-year-old Zaqary Asuamah of Decatur stole the show with a moving recitation of the full “I Have a Dream” speech, which drew a standing ovation from the crowd and hugs from President Carter.
"We were deeply honored to co-host this event in Atlanta, the birthplace of Dr. King, and to bring together community leaders to discuss education, service and youth development to create a path to achieve the American dream," said Laysha Ward of Target. "Together with Points of Light, we want these conversations to lead to action, strengthen our youth and communities, and honor the legacy of Dr. King."
“We’re pleased that, with Target’s support, more than 50,000 people have pledged to participate and live Dr. King’s vision of ‘a table of brotherhood’ where Americans come together in the cause of social justice and opportunity for all,” said Tracy Hoover, president of Points of Light. “Tonight’s table was set with grace and intention toward that goal, and our guests were overwhelmingly positive.”
Sunday’s event was the sixth Sunday Supper co-hosted by Target and Points of Light, following their pledge on MLK Day in January 2013 to engage supper guests around the nation in civic dialogue to create solutions and service projects to solve local community issues, especially related to education and youth empowerment.
The next America’s Sunday Supper will take place in San Antonio, Texas on Thursday, August 29 with a theme of Hispanic youth empowerment. To find out about hosting your own Sunday Supper, go to www.pointsoflight.org/mlk/host-americas-sunday-supper. To follow the conversations online, follow @PointsofLight on Twitter and use hashtag #2013MLKDay.
About Points of Light
Points of Light – the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service – mobilizes millions of people to take action that is changing the world. Through affiliates in 250 cities and partnerships with thousands of nonprofits and corporations, Points of Light engages 4 million volunteers in 30 million hours of service each year. We bring the power of people to bear where it’s needed most. For more information, go to www.pointsoflight.org.
Minneapolis-based Target Corporation (NYSE: TGT) serves guests at 1,856 stores – 1,788 in the United States and 68 in Canada – and at Target.com. Since 1946, Target has given 5 percent of its profit through community grants and programs; today, that giving equals more than $4 million a week. For more information about Target’s commitment to corporate responsibility, visit target.com/corporateresponsibility.