Reflecting on the Significance of MLK Day in 2018

The arrival of Martin Luther King Jr. Day this year seems particularly urgent.  We have come so far as a country since Dr. King lived and died. Yet here we are, in 2018, in a society still so beset and with new permission for intolerance, divisiveness, and racism. Overt acts of injustice and discriminatory policies chip away at the highest ideals that our country was founded on and at the very fabric – the people – who make it great. But the daily negative images, narratives, and rhetoric that allow us to rationalize inequity and injustice are particularly oppressive to people of color and to our national conscience.

On this MLK Day, as we acknowledge these challenges, we must also reflect on and commit anew to Dr. King’s vision and belief that while "the arc of the moral universe is long, it bends towards justice." We must not forget the important role we play, along with you our community of givers, to every day be the “benders”.  

Today, we once again affirm our unwavering commitment to this community and to all who call the Greater Washington region home, including our most vulnerable neighbors. We aim to remove barriers and facilitate access so that children and families can live in a safe environment, earn a living wage, and build assets for a secure future. For a region that is free of discrimination and preordained disadvantage based on race, income, gender, or zip code. In order to accomplish this vision, we will be even more deliberate and intentional about creating effective partnerships that work to disrupt generational poverty that is rooted in historical inequity; to foster solutions alongside those most impacted; and to adjust our proposed interventions responsively, based on current context, need, and opportunities. 

In our work, and particularly on this day, we are inspired by the courage, commitment, and indomitability of Dr. King. Working alongside donors, nonprofits, and community members, we see the promise and potential to realize Dr. King's dream for what a great America could really mean.

We invite you to learn more about our community investment work and initiatives which inspire neighbors – donors, community organizations, government, and the private sector – to work together to improve the economic conditions and social well-being of our entire community. Through them we invest directly in people, nonprofit organizations, communities, and changing systems to solve social problems and improve lives. 

Thank you for your continued support of our work to strengthen the Greater Washington region.

Bruce McNamer
President and CEO