Author: Darrin Korte, Executive Director
On April 4th of this year, we marked the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. As we reflect on the last half-century and honor the legacy of Dr. King, we need to ask ourselves, how have we made good on his call for drastic change in our society to ensure equality for all? Would Dr. King be proud of the progress we have made in his absence? If he were still here, what guidance would he offer to those of us seeking a just society–one where its members are not “judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character”?
We at the Center believe there is more we must do, and we need your help.
Since our founding by Black ministers from the Western Avenue Baptist Church in 1929 to give Black boys in the neighborhood (who were not welcome at the YMCA at the time) a safe place to grow and develop, racial justice has and remains a critical component of our mission and daily work.
We recently came across an appeal letter sent to our supporters on April 25, 1968–just three weeks after Dr. King’s assassination. Reading the words written by the Friends of the Cambridge Community Center is both disheartening and reassuring. Disheartening, because we see how little has truly changed since 1968. Most of what is written in this letter fits today and maintains its relevance. Reassuring, because it shows us we are still doing the work begun almost 90 years ago by the leaders of the Center.
Below, you will find a copy of that letter. I ask that you take a minute to read it and ask yourself the questions posed in the first paragraph of this letter. If we can’t answer affirmatively that enough change has occurred, we must ask, “what more can we do?” This is a question we ask of ourselves at the Center every single day.
Your gift to the Center is one way you can make the change Dr. King envisioned.
We work day-in and day-out to do everything we can to help alleviate the symptoms of racial and economic inequality in Cambridge. We do this by providing the highest quality programs and services, specific to the needs of our most vulnerable community members, while never putting the burden of cost on our clients.
None of this important work is possible without YOU! As a private non-profit organization, we do not receive funds from the City of Cambridge, which makes your contribution crucial to our continued work and growth. We thank you for your past support and hope you will partner with us by making a gift to the Center.