PHILADELPHIA (CBS) —  Thousands of volunteers in the Philadelphia region are taking part today in The King Day of Service. They’re rolling up their sleeves and pitching in to make our neighborhoods stronger.

Currently, in its 27th year, The King Day of Service is considered the oldest and largest in the country. This year the theme is Combatting Racism & Building Community.

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The day of service was held at Girard College for the 13th straight year. The event honors Dr. King’s legacy by transforming the national holiday into a day of citizen action.

This year, that included Free COVID testing led by the Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium, free adult and children’s vaccination clinics, distribution of personal protective equipment, as well as educational activities and voter registration.

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People involved say events like these help bridge gaps.

Philadelphia Holding 27th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Of Service

“Our community vaccination program really is focused on being in communities where there’s historically poor access to health care, have had poor access to vaccinations, have had lower uptick in vaccines,” Dr. Sage Myers, of Children’s Hospital said. “To be able to partner with community partners that people trust, be in that space where people know how to get there, it’s easy for them to get there, and be available with both the vaccine and education, information that people might need.”

At 3 p.m., there will be a virtual discussion on Dr. King’s legacy featuring Senator Bob Casey and others.

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If you’re looking for a list of events going on Monday to honor Luther King Jr., check out our list here.

Jasmine Payoute