A group of Metea Valley High School students woke up early one Monday morning in January, but they weren’t headed off to class. Instead they volunteered at Loaves & Fishes Community Services as part of the annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service. The students’ hard work and energy tempered the bitter 10-degree cold outside.

“Each year, they amaze me,” said MVHS Newspaper Advisor and English teacher Adam Page. “It’s easy for people to criticize teenagers, but I think it’s clear to see that so many are engaged, selfless and committed to making the world a better place.”

Metea Valley students have participated in a Day of Service at Loaves & Fishes for five years.

Page, along with Social Studies Department Chair Don Pankuch, and English teacher/advisor Casey Solgos met their sixteen students at Metea Valley to kick off the Day of Service. Also gathered were an additional 170 students scheduled to volunteer at various community organizations. The MLK Day of Service was inspired by Dr. King and his message to serve others, strengthen communities and bridge barriers.

Many of the students were familiar with packing child nutrition meals at Loaves & Fishes which are offered weekly to struggling families with children under eighteen years-old. The MVHS students were aware some of their fellow classmates may live in households that face food insecurity.

Metea Valley senior Avani Shah is the Headline News Editor of The Stampede, the student run school newspaper. She expressed gratitude for the opportunity to volunteer especially on her day off, as her weekdays are filled with extra-curricular activities.

“It feels nice to volunteer in a way that honors Dr. King’s legacy,” said Shah. “It’s wonderful to be able to give back to a community that has given me so much.”