Day of Service helps inmates

Published 01/21 2013 03:40PM

Updated 01/21 2013 05:54PM

URBANA -- Hundreds of thousands of people around the country are celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr., Day by volunteering and doing service. Many projects are taking place in our area to give back to the community.

Dr. King once said, "Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'what are you doing for others?'"

So, on a day many people didn't have to work, some kept busy by volunteering. People came to the Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center to help with the Books 2 Prisoners project.

Volunteers opened letters written by inmates from around the state. They're requesting different kinds of books. People there tried to find those to match the inmates' requests.

Organizers said it's a fitting tribute for the day. Volunteers sent nearly 80,000 books to more than 12,000 inmates since the program started. It's free for the inmates.

Volunteers said it's a rewarding project, especially since those prisoners will return to the community and the books can help them prepare for that. Many books requested by inmates address continuing education or learning trades. Some help inmates learn to read.

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