Black History Month: Working to Realize Dr. King’s Dream Through Community Service

Today we’re sharing the story of  how  Cassandra Bolding, Licensed Professional Counselor/ PhD Candidate at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology is living Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream through encouraging others to pursue their goals and to be the change in her community.

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His dream was a reimagining of what it meant to be Black, and it was also about being a citizen of this world. He spoke to our collective responsibility as citizens of this world to ensure that all people were treated with dignity, and equity that was not dependent upon sex, creed, religion or race and a of radical freedom. The freedom Dr. King espoused was the freedom of every man woman and child to define themselves, their value and worth. I use the word radical because he was introducing a way of thinking about freedom the was not just of our bodies but our minds, South African activist Steven Biko said” the most powerful weapon in the hand of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed”.

As a child the iconic “I have a dream “speech was flashed across the television and every February, we discussed his work in general terms, therefore I didn’t fully grasp the magnitude of Dr. Kings contributions. Now as an adult living in a world that challenges my ability to see the realization of Dr. Kings vision for us and our world, what I now understand is my responsibility to add to that vision to teach with great depth and intentionality what his speech and works embodied to my children. He has inspired me to never settle for the limits that others attempt to place upon me, it incites me to question and challenge ways of thinking and behaving that oppress and marginalize anyone. As a business owner, HIV Counselor and therapist these values inform the work that I do, infusing advocacy for human rights into all that is produced. Dr. King worked closely with Mahatma Gandhi who encouraged us to be the change we want to see in the world and Dr. Martin Luther King embodied that aim. And it is my responsibility to be the change.

As part of our Black History Month celebration this year, we want to highlight that it’s also history in the making, and share the idea that anyone can be a hero. We’re sharing a series of stories about the community at the Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church of Atlanta Georgia.  The church has been a part of the community since 1886 and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. served as co-pastor alongside his father.  Today the church hosts a congregation of over 6,000 people and continues to serve the Atlanta community and beyond.  Join us in learning how a group of impressive young leaders from this historic church continue to be inspired by Dr. King’s vision and to inspire others through community service.