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A life celebrated through service

By Shaina Negron, CNN
updated 7:26 AM EST, Wed January 16, 2013
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is a National Day of Service. How will you make an impact?
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is a National Day of Service. How will you make an impact?
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was born on January 15, 1929, in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is the national holiday held every year on the third Monday in January
  • The holiday is a National Day of Service in King's memory

(CNN) -- On Monday January 21, the U.S. will again swear in its first black president on the national holiday honoring one of the civil rights leaders who helped to make the inauguration a reality.

In so many ways, the day will be a living testament to the dream of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who would have been 84 years old on January 15.

As the official MLK National Day of Service, the nation is called to remember his legacy through service and social leadership.

Just as King believed we all can make a difference to end discrimination, he believed everyone had the power to uplift society through service. While President Obama is sworn in for his second term, volunteers around the country will be rolling up their sleeves to help their communities big and small.

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But you don't have to lead a movement to honor King's dream. Service projects are taking place around the country and throughout the week.

How to make an impact:

At the MLK National Day of Service site you can learn more about the holiday and the organizations involved in leading the effort.

For updates on news and happenings for the Day of Service, you can subscribe to their newsletter and find tips for planning your day and making it count.

If you want to start your own project, the site provides tool kits you can use to help teach your friends, families and neighbors topics ranging from disaster preparedness to well being. You can download your toolkit and spend the day teaching others.

The Corporation for National and Community Service, the body charged with leading the day of service, also has tools to find and start projects for the day of service. You can enter your zip code to find registered projects near you, or find out more on how you can register your own project to recruit volunteers.

Don't have the day off? Learn more about the The Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change and how you can volunteer or donate to their programs.

Let us know how you plan to make an impact on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

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