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In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his commitment to serving the community, Bear Tavern Elementary School students performed their own act of service for their local community on January 13, 2017. 

Students gathered for a school-wide assembly to hear from Reverend Gil Caldwell, a classmate and personal friend of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who helped organize many civil rights events in the Boston area with him. Reverend Caldwell discussed segregation, shared his experiences through photographs and paintings, and delightfully took questions from an awe-inspired student audience.

Following the assembly, Bear Tavern students partnered with the local charity Christine’s Hope for Kids to package items for several area charities. In the months prior to this event, students collected pennies and coins, new and used books, tooth brushes, toothpaste and cans of soup.  Fifth grade students made scarves for the effort during their holiday brunch. Christine’s Hope for Kids donated additional items like pajamas, blankets, crackers, teddy bears and bags. Bear Tavern students decorated a number of the bags as well. In all, the students raised $3,435.91 which will be matched by Christine’s Hope and sent to a charity voted on by the Bear Tavern students. Students packaged 325 bags that will be distributed by Christine’s Hope for Kids in support of the following charities: The American Red Cross, Womanspace, Children’s Home Society, Homefront, Mill Hill Childhood Development Center, Mercer Street Friends, and Trenton Area Soup Kitchen.

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Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is remembered for his civil rights activism and his unwavering service to the local communities. Through this event, Bear Tavern students were enlightened about segregation and learned the lifelong lesson about the importance of community service.

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