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Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration: My Brother’s Keeper

Monday, January 16, 2017
From 10:00 am to 5:00 pm

On January 16, 2017, ECHO, in partnership with the City of Burlington, will host the 5th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Community Celebration. This FREE EVENT is part of a nationwide initiative to make MLK Day a"day on, not a day off," in which communities engage their citizenry in meaningful service and reflection. Each year, adults and children gather to explore issues of diversity and inclusion through story, song, and conversation. This year, we are proud to highlight our community's youth and recognize their leadership in advancing social justice and eliminating racism as part of the City's "My Brother's Keeper" program.
10:30 a.m.Children in the Civil Rights Movement
11:30 a.m.Celebration Honoring Dr. King Part 1
12:30 p.m.Celebration Honoring Dr. King Part 2
1:15 p.m.Understanding Implicit Bias Workshop
2:00 p.m.My Brother's Keeper Youth Panel
3:00 p.m.Civil Rights Panel: A Vision for Civil Rights in Vermont
Detailed Schedule of Events

10:30 a.m. - Children in the Civil Rights Movement with The Peace & Justice Center

Explore the planning and implementation of the Children's March of 1963 in Birmingham, AL. In between watching age appropriate excerpts from Mighty Times: The Children's March, participants of all ages will explore Kingian Nonviolence through discussion and song.


11:30 a.m. - Celebration Honoring Dr. King Part 1, featuring:

An introduction by Mayor Miro Weinberger

Students from Hunt Middle School, The Integrated Arts Academy, & The Sustainability Academy

Muslim Girls Making Change, a youth led group created by Hawa Adam, Kiran Waqar, Lena Ginawi, and Balkisa Abdikadir. Tired of having their voices shut out or ignored by an older generation, they turned to slam poetry to be heard and make a change.

Africa Jamono
, a West African drumming group that immerses audiences in the culture and rhythms of Senegal, Mali, Ghana, and Mauritania. Its members work to raise awareness of West African culture through music, dance, and art display.


12:30 p.m. - Celebration Honoring Dr. King Part 2 (for mature audiences), featuring:

Burlington High School Dance Team, a fabulous student-led team of talented dancers that incorporates choreography from various styles of dance and movement. The team was formed this year, giving students a space to dance, learn together, and perform. Its members include: Zanevia Glosson, Medine Nifasha, Ophelia Keefe, Robbie Mafuta, Bety Mayani Rita Niyimpaye, Savun Souvanhna, Liliana Venner, Asia Vo, and Cecile Yangambi.

Rajnii Eddins, a spoken word artist, singer, and activist who works to make a difference in every life that crosses his. He has been performing poetry, engaging diverse audiences, and coaching young performers for more than 20 years.


1:15 p.m. - Understanding Implicit Bias with the City of Burlington CEDO's AmeriCorps State Team

Join the City of Burlington's CEDO AmeriCorps State team as they explore how to overcome subconscious bias by moving towards our discomfort, rather than away. We will watch a powerful video that unpacks bias and then take a self-test to examine our own attitudes and bias.


2:00 p.m. - My Brother's Keeper Youth Panel facilitated by CEDO's AmeriCorps State Team

An introduction by Superintendent Yaw Obeng

Join a group of inspiring youth leaders as they reflect about their work in diversity, inclusion, and youth empowerment. They will share insights about the importance of education, handling success under pressure, overcoming racism, and sharpening job skills during this illuminating panel discussion.


3:00 p.m. - Civil Rights Panel: A Vision for Civil Rights in Vermont facilitated by The Greater Burlington Multicultural Resource Center

Every year The Greater Burlington Multicultural Resource Center organizes a community speak-out and panel discussion as part of its Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Remembrance. This year's panel will reflect on the Civil Rights era's legacy and offer a vision for civil rights in Vermont.
All Day Walk-up Activities
"I too am America" Photo Project, a community photo project was inspired by the poem "I, Too" by Langston Hughes. Participants explore their identity by filling out a dry-erase shirt with the line "I am ________, I too am America." The project asks, Who is a "true American"? Who decides? and What assumptions do we make about the identities of long-standing and new residents?


Marching Figures Craft, a collective art project inspired by the Children's Crusade in Birmingham, AL in 1963. Participants create small versions of themselves and declare something they would be willing to march on behalf of. The collected figures create a mini-march.


I Have a Dream Tiles, an activity inspired by the Global Peace Tiles projects. After reflecting on the value that MLK stood for, participants create a mini mixed-media mural that reflects their vision or"dream" for our community's future.


Census Response Wall, an activity in which visitors are asked to share on a response wall their reactions to information about how US Census questions regarding race has changed from 1790 - 2000.


Live Painting, local artist Francoise Manishim will be creating a live event painting to capture the day's event.

Shuttle Information
There will be a free shuttle bus running between the Integrated Arts Academy, Sustainability Academy, and ECHO on a 15 min loop from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. All child riders must be accompanied by an adult chaperone.
About My Brother's Keeper
The City of Burlington announced its acceptance of President Obama's My Brother's Keeper (MBK) Challenge in May 2016. MBK addresses opportunity gaps facing American youth, particularly boys and young men of color. MBK has been a movement that has led to action by all levels of government, schools, non-profits, private, and individuals to take meaningful steps to improve opportunities. Burlington's MBK overarching goals are to ensure that all youth are safe, on track to graduate from high school, ready for college or career, and given opportunities to lead and thrive.

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