ATLANTA — Martin Luther King Jr.’s rich legacy is commemorated in many ways, but the civil rights icon and his impact on American history often circle back to his efforts in creating a more just and equal society. That is part of the reason that Martin Luther King Jr. National Park was created in Atlanta nearly 30 years ago as a way to pay homage to him and to give back to the community where he was raised.
On Thursday, however, the park was the one on the receiving end thanks to a sizable donation.
ecoATM, a reCommerce company for consumer electronics that encourages economic and financial flexibility by planting kiosks in various locations where people can exchange their old phones for money, presented Martin Luther King Jr. National Park with a check for $10,000 to help fund an existing initiative that seeks to educate young people about the importance of recycling — especially at the park itself.
”We were right in the midst of our discussion on how we were going to enhance our recycling program,” Judy Forte, who serves as the superintendent for the park said during the ceremony in the northeast section of Georgia’s capital city. ”We will be working with our local partners on how to connect with them to even do more.”
The park lays in the center of what used to be the fourth ward of Atlanta and is of great importance to the community. It not only serves as a beacon for communal comradery but also encompasses King’s childhood home as well as Ebenezer Baptist Church, where he famously served as pastor beginning 60 years ago. The neighborhood surrounding the park is the one that King grew up in and marks an important part of the story into his development.
Tony Rome, a marketing strategist for ecoATM, said the importance of the park was a key reason that his company made the donation.
”King was not only a giant in terms of his commitment to changing the world but also he had a commitment to people and to inspire change,” said Rome during the check presentation. ”We are here today to give back to those people.”
The importance of Atlanta, especially in the larger context of Black History Month, extends beyond King and his everlasting legacy. The city has been at the forefront of social justice and civil rights as well as being one of the most important hubs in Black entertainment. That’s why both ecoATM and the Martin Luther King Jr. were placing an emphasis on making a difference in the community. ecoATM, in particular, has made a number of its kiosks available in Atlanta at malls and grocery stores.
Rome said the company’s kiosks serve as more than simply a way to earn more money — they are also fundamentally important as they are in place to keep the environment healthy as humanly possible.
“What we don’t want to have happen is have devices end up in the trash,” warned Rome. “There are hazardous materials in those devices that are bad for our environment”.
Instead of having used cell phones flooding the streets or being dumped in landfills the company’s goal is to be able to repair and fix the phones in order to reuse them, reducing the toxic waste that comes from these phones. This also helps the company offer phones and advanced technology to other people across the world in order to help them with obtaining the important devices that are becoming a staple in modern society.
As both the King National Park and ecoATM work on assisting the Atlanta community, both are also looking at the global impact and importance that they have on the environment and how to maintain a clean and sustainable planet.
”We try to envision Dr. King’s vision of a beloved community,” Forte added. ”We get to show how he was raised made him who he was.”
Vintage Photos Of Black History Being Made In America
1. Harriet TubmanSource:Getty 1 of 40
2. Martin Luther King and civil rights leadersSource:Getty 2 of 40
3. Black PanthersSource:Getty 3 of 40
4. Tuskeegee AirmenSource:Getty 4 of 40
5. Books Are Weapons PosterSource:Getty 5 of 40
6. World War II 93rd InfantrySource:Getty 6 of 40
7. Rosa ParksSource:Getty 7 of 40
8. Integrated Classroom in North CarolinaSource:Getty 8 of 40
9. African American Students Enter High School with Military EscortSource:Getty 9 of 40
10. Lunchcounter Protest in VirginiaSource:Getty 10 of 40
11. Harry Belafonte Leads Civil Rights RallySource:Getty 11 of 40
12. Malcolm X's FuneralSource:Getty 12 of 40
13. Martin Luther King's FuneralSource:Getty 13 of 40
14. Lynching Victim Hanging Above CrowdSource:Getty 14 of 40
15. W.E.B. DuBoisSource:Getty 15 of 40
16. Booker T. WashingtonSource:Getty 16 of 40
17. The 369th, 15th New York who won the Croix de Guerre for GallantrySource:Getty 17 of 40
18. Mutilated Corpse of Claude NealSource:Getty 18 of 40
19. Segregated FountainSource:Getty 19 of 40
20. Womens Defense Corp of AmericaSource:Getty 20 of 40
21. Crowd Waiting to Enter Supreme CourtSource:Getty 21 of 40
22. Black Students Integrate Little Rock's Central High SchoolSource:Getty 22 of 40
23. Troops Watch as Black Students Go to SchoolSource:Getty 23 of 40
24. Segregated RestroomsSource:Getty 24 of 40
25. Portrait Of Medgar EversSource:Getty 25 of 40
26. Separate Waiting RoomSource:Getty 26 of 40
27. Race riots in Birmingham, Alabama.Source:Getty 27 of 40
28. A White Man Bars African-Americans From RestaurantSource:Getty 28 of 40
29. Myrlie Evers Speaking at MicrophoneSource:Getty 29 of 40
30. A Young MarcherSource:Getty 30 of 40
31. Civil Rights FightersSource:Getty 31 of 40
32. Elijah MuhammadSource:Getty 32 of 40
33. Anti Segregation In The Southern Stores March At Broadway In New YorkSource:Getty 33 of 40
34. Selma to Montgomery MarchSource:Getty 34 of 40
35. Selma to Montgomery MarchSource:Getty 35 of 40
36. Soldiers at Civil Rights ProtestSource:Getty 36 of 40
37. Luther King's FuneralSource:Getty 37 of 40
38. Coretta Scott KingSource:Getty 38 of 40
39. 'Kidnapped' Poster At Black Panther RallySource:Getty 39 of 40
40. 'Right On!' Black Power ButtonSource:Getty 40 of 40
Preserving Black History: Martin Luther King National Park Gets Major Donation To Protect The Environment was originally published on newsone.com