World of Wellesley (WOW) began its Good Trouble: More Than Just a Day – A Call to Action event on December 19, as a countdown to Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2021. By signing up to join the countdown, participants will receive facts on the history and importance of Martin Luther King Jr. and his impact on the Civil Rights Movement.
The countdown also seeks to provide an educational context for this year’s annual MLK Jr. Day Breakfast held on January 18. Unlike past breakfasts, this year’s breakfast will be held online because of COVID-19 safety precautions. However, WOW views the adaptation not as a limitation, but as an opportunity to carry a different message to previous years – a call to action.
“We’re not looking at it[the virtual breakfast] as a challenge, but looking at it as an opportunity,” said Ms. Christina Horner, a co-President of WOW. “We’re planning to have a virtual breakfast where we come together as a community, learn, and most importantly, this year, have conversations about Dr. King.”
The WOW committee, along with student representatives Taryn Lane ’22 and Sabrina Hart ’23 from the high school will lead and facilitate the events at the breakfast. By doing this, WOW intends to create a more interactive experience that invites participants to not only participate, but step up and take active steps in seeking racial justice. It also aims to emphasize the interaction between participants in maintaining a group dialogue to discuss what steps are needed to make the Wellesley community and ultimately the world, a more equitable environment.
“It[The breakfast] goes beyond coming together. We want this to be the continuation of discussing making change. That’s why we came up with that tagline, ‘a call to action’, because we feel like everyone has a responsibility. Not only in making Wellesley a better place, but in making our society a better place,” said Horner.
To do this, WOW plans to magnify the voices of participants by introducing reciprocal activities that allow individuals to express their engagement in the community..
In addition, students from the high school will lead book group discussions aimed at eighth through twelfth grade student participants. There will also be a book read for kindergarten through second graders.
WOW plans to hold an art workshop in collaboration with the Wellesley Free Library, where artwork drawn during the breakfast will be displayed at the library. At the end, Michelle Chalmers, President Emeritus of WOW will lead a reading of her book, Vitamin D and Me: How Humans Outsmarted the Sun.
WOW aspires for the breakfast to be a multi-generational event, inviting collaboration from the youth and adults in Wellesley.
“We’re really excited that we’re trying to make sure that high school student voices are being amplified in our commitment to strive for racial justice,” said Horner. “The intent is to be more collaborative than we have been in the past and to also be a collaboration between our youth and the adults.”
The event’s ultimate goal is to unite participants in the fight for racial equality and centers around the question: “What can you do in your sphere of influence to make our community better?”