On Saturday, Jan. 21, the Center for Student Engagement and Community Partnerships at Virginia Tech hosted its fourth annual Day Care Facelift Project during the Martin Luther King Jr. 2012 celebration week.

Over 130 Virginia Tech students and community members participated in a facelift for 10 day care facilities throughout the New River Valley, including the Head Starts of Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Narrows and Pearisburg, and Valley Interfaith Child Care Center among others.

Overall, the volunteers gave a deep cleaning to 14 classrooms, gave “facelifts” to two outdoor playgrounds, painted over 20 cubbies and 12 large rooms, and repainted eight murals for the 10 participating day cares, along with many other improvements.

Volunteers, including team members from Virginia Tech’s Men’s Lacrosse, Circle K International, KAUST, and Students Engaging and Responding through Volunteer Experiences (SERVE), and the Honors Residential College’s service and sustainability committee, organized with day care representatives to determine what service project would be most beneficial to the organization.

“I really liked being able to work with my team and connect with my community partner,” said student team leader Analise Adams. This year was Adams third year participating in the Martin Luther King Jr. Day Care Facelift Project. “I like that each year I leave the day cares feeling as though my team has made a lasting impact for the day cares,” Adams said.

According to Whitney Johnson, assistant director for community partnerships, the center planned the day of service with intentions of creating an opportunity for students to celebrate the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday as a day on, not a day off, and to advance King’s legacy and commitment to transforming our nation through service to others. The center’s volunteers joined hundreds of thousands of American's who participated in service projects on Martin Luther King Jr. day throughout the nation.

The Corporation for National and Community Service leads the annual day of service on Martin Luther King Jr. day, working with the King Center in Atlanta and thousands of nonprofit groups, faith-based organizations, schools, and businesses nationwide.  For further information about the Martin Luther King Jr. day of service and what took place across the country, visit the website

Written by Kayla Hastrup.