QUINCY -- The third annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service in Adams County encourages people to spend "a day on, not a day off" on Monday, Jan. 15.
People can participate by dropping off nonperishable food items and gently used children's books at the health department, 330 Vermont, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
"Many people are off from school and work that day, and this gives the community an opportunity to still give back," said Jeremy Ledford, Adams County Medical Reserve Corps coordinator.
Volunteers with the Retired Senior Volunteer Program and the corps, supported by John Wood Community College and the Adams County Health Department, will collect the donations.
"They can drive up, have the items ready to go and we will come out and get them. People don't even have to get out of the car," Ledford said.
Food items will be donated to the 2018 Souper Bowl Day of Caring, and donated children's books will be distributed in the lobbies of the health department, which encourages young people to read and allows them to take a book home during their visits.
People who complete a pledge form, available at drkingdayofservice.com, and show up with a donation have the chance to win one of three $20 gift cards.
"It can be cold out this time of year. People may not want to brave the cold, so we thought we would offer a bit of an incentive," Ledford said. "We wanted to make it a fun event that kind of engages the community."
Anyone participating, regardless of whether they make a donation, will take home a winter weather preparedness starter kit with information about how to prepare vehicles and homes for extreme temperatures, snowfall and icy conditions.
Ledford said the event, marking its third year, continues to build momentum.
"It's not something done just here in Quincy. It happens all over the country as people honor Dr. King's legacy by hosting various days of service events," Ledford said. "It's not a service project. It's more of a community service event."
Even small donations can have a big impact.
"Most people have a couple of spare nonperishable food items around the house or some books they may have had from their children that they no longer need," Ledford said. "We want to collect things that are not a burden to people but still valuable to many others in need of those items."