A project for everybody at Dubuque's MLK Jr. Day of Service - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

A project for everybody at Dubuque's MLK Jr. Day of Service

Michael Mulloy helps weatherize a Dubuque home Michael Mulloy helps weatherize a Dubuque home

Organizers with Dubuque's AmeriCorps Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service offered a variety of service projects, allowing anybody to volunteer, no matter how old or able-bodied.

Projects ranged from cleaning up local schools to making cards for Iowa troops overseas.

Michael Mulloy is a student at Clarke University. Monday afternoon, he joined some of his fellow Clarke Residential Life staff members in weatherizing a Dubuque duplex.

"This is really fun for me, I enjoy it," he said, caulking the corners of the ceiling. "By doing this...it saves time and money. It just prevents all that extra damage that you don't want and all that time you're going to waste."

For Mulloy, weatherizing and home improvement is a fun and fulfilling way to give back to the community.

"My uncle is a retired carpenter, and since I was about 10, so 10 years ago, my uncle started teaching me just basic skills to fix up my house or help him out," Mulloy said.

He joined other volunteers and members of Green Iowa AmeriCorps at his site.

The house was just one of 16 service projects in Dubuque this year. Last year, which was Dubuque's first ever Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service, there were five sites and about 100 volunteers.

This year, nearly 200 people volunteered to, "Make it a day on, not off" as the event's slogan says.

Brandon Gibbs is with Green Iowa AmeriCorps in Dubuque. He said all the volunteers "could be, like, playing in the snow, watching TV, but, no, they're, like, here to serve."

Organizers picked projects this year that would allow volunteers to help local service organizations, such as Project Concern, the Teresa Shelter and the Dubuque Rescue Mission.

"There's so many projects that they get that they just can't do, just because they don't have enough people or they don't have enough time," Gibbs said. "Today, we have all these volunteers being deployed, so they can help these agencies."

Mary Bridget Corken is the volunteer services coordinator for the City of Dubuque and helped organized this year's event, making sure there was a project for everybody.

"When people think of service, a lot of times they think of, you know, manual labor or scrubbing floors or whatever it may be," Corken said. "We have a wide variety, so we have people making cards for the Iowa Troop Pantry, that get sent in care packages sent to all Iowa troops deployed."

No matter the project, the goal is clear.

"People are honoring Dr. King's legacy and, you know the Table of Brotherhood, so if we all are doing something to help the community, it's improving it," Gibbs said. "We want everyone to serve year round-- not just today, but every day."

The nearly 200 volunteers met at noon for lunch before deploying to their 16 project sites. They worked from about 1-4 p.m.

Other projects included making fleece blankets for Project Concern, spending time with senior citizens and tidying up the Mines of Spain Recreation Area.

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