DIY Day of Service Ideas for MLK Day


We can think of no better way to honor Martin Luther King Jr’s legacy than spending the day helping others. Each year on MLK Day, United Way organizes a Day of Service. This year, we will gather to make fleece blankets for the Children’s Bureau, Little Red Door Cancer Agency and Early Learning Indiana.


When we put out the call to join us, the community rallied. It didn’t take long to completely book up our volunteer spots. We’re so thankful–what a good problem to have! But just because our volunteer opportunity is full doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of other ways to lend a hand and have your own day of service.


To help more people design their own day of volunteering, we gathered some options you can try on your own.


DIY Day of Service Ideas:


  • Make your own blankets. We’re making blankets for three local community partner organizations. You can purchase supplies and make some too, then donate them to your favorite local shelter, church or other nonprofit. Here’s a good tutorial on how to make these easy, no-sew blankets.
  • Collect books or other gently-used household items to donate. This is a two-for one–you declutter and clean up your own space, and the recipient shelter or other nonprofit saves operating costs on household items they need.
  • Walk for a charity. You can use an app like Charity Miles to be active AND benefit an organization of your choosing.
  • Find your own opportunity! There are plenty of deserving local organizations with year-round volunteer needs. Check our dashboard for current community volunteer opportunities.


Our goal for our Day of Service is to make 200 blankets. Little Red Door Cancer Agency gives their blankets to cancer patients going through chemo and radiation treatments, Early Learning Indiana gives them to their students in need and Children’s Bureau provides blankets to children that stay at the shelter. We’d love to hear about your plans so we can see the collective impact of our work. Share your Day of Service goals on social and be sure to tag @uwci.