Somerville Announces Two Martin Luther King Day Observances

Mayor Katjana Ballantyne, and Somerville’s Department of Racial and Social Justice (RSJ), are announcing two programs celebrating the life and legacy of  Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in observance of Martin Luther King Day. To provide an opportunity for youth to intensively engage in the work of the civil rights leader, a youth writing and dialog series will launch in advance of the holiday. To allow all to model the good works of Dr. King, a drive for donations of winter items needed for unhoused residents will launch the week of the holiday.

Youth Creative Writing and Dialogue Workshop Series

In January, RSJ, in partnership with Books of Hope, will begin a series of youth creative writing workshops and dialogue sessions to discuss the works and solidarity of Martin Luther King. Youth will discuss various works of Dr. King and explore the intersections of his legacy and life in the 21st century.

The first workshop, titled Remaining Awake Through Revolution, will be held on Wednesday, January 10 at 6:00 p.m. at The Dojo at Somernova (15 Properzi Way). Youth will be provided with writing materials and food at the event.

MLK Community Donation Drive

Throughout January 2024, Somerville residents of all ages are invited to share in the spirit of service by donating new or gently used winter goods to the MLK Community Donation Drive. Donated items will help support our unhoused neighbors and be delivered to community partners supporting unhoused and displaced residents.

Residents can donate:

New or gently used

  • Hats
  • Gloves
  • Neck warmers
  • Blankets
  • Sleeping bags
  • Sweatshirts
  • Sweatpants

New, Unopened, Unexpired

  • Hand warmers
  • NEW Wool or thermal socks 
  • NEW Bras/sports bras
  • NEW Underwear (larger sizes)
  • Toothbrushes and Toothpaste (travel size)
  • Shampoo and Conditioner (travel size)
  • Deodorant sticks
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Soap
  • Baby wipes (normal size)
  • Microwavable noodles
  • Soup/pasta cups
  • Microwavable oatmeal
  • Microwavable Mac n’ Cheese
  • Crackers/chips
  • Meat sticks
  • Mini cereal boxes

Labeled collection boxes are set up around the City. Donations can be made at:

  • City Hall (93 Highland Avenue, Welcome Desk on the 1st floor and the Mayor’s Office on the 2nd floor)
  • Somerville Central Library (79 Highland Avenue)
  • Somerville East Library (115 Broadway) 
  • Somerville West Branch Library (40 College Avenue)
  • City Hall Annex (50 Evergreen Street)
  • Dept. of Public Works (DPW) Building (One Franey Road) 
  • Council on Aging Offices (167 Holland Street)
  • Somerville Police Headquarters Lobby (220 Washington Street)
  • Somerville Fire Department Headquarters (266 Broadway)
  • SFD Highland Ave. Station (265 Highland Avenue)
  • SFD Union Square Station (255 Somerville Avenue)
  • SFD Teele Square Station (6 Newbury Street on the corner of Holland Street) 
  • SFD Lowell Street Station (651 Somerville Avenue on the corner of Lowell Street) 

Donations will be accepted through Wednesday, January 31st.

For questions about the winter goods drive or the upcoming series of youth workshops centering the work of Dr. Martin Luther King, please contact


Persons with disabilities who need auxiliary aids and services for effective communication (i.e., CART, ASL), written materials in alternative formats, or reasonable modifications in policies and procedures in order to access the programs, activities, and meetings of the City of Somerville should please contact Adrienne Pomeroy at 617-625-6600 x 2059 or

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