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Labor and Economic Opportunity

Michigan Community Service Commission offering MLK Day volunteer project funding

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MLK Day of Service Grant Announcement – Serving with Heart and Hope
Michigan responds to COVID-19 with resilience and grit

The Michigan Community Service Commission (MCSC) is honoring Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service by offering grants to support volunteer projects and community needs during the pandemic.

MLK Day of Service:    January 18, 2021
Dates of Projects:         Held between January 8, 2021 and January 24, 2021
Amount of Grants:        $100 – $1,000
MI Mask Project:          Grants will be reviewed and awarded as they are received.
Round 1 Application Deadline:  Dec.18 with award notification by Dec. 21
Round 2 Application Deadline:  Jan. 8 with award notification by Jan.12 (*More Competitive)

Grant awards will be made to organizations selecting one of three virtual grant application options

  • Organize a Keeping Children and Adults Safe: MI Masks+ project
  • Implement a Compassion Through the Gift of Food project
  • Design a project that meets a community need.

Application Links


  • Projects must be virtual to ensure the safety of those in service and those that are being served to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • Deliveries to organizations can be made by people wearing masks and practicing Center for Disease Control and State of Michigan guidelines.
  • All awards will be paid by reimbursement upon submission of the project report and documentation of expenditures. 
  •  The awardees are required to register as a vendor with the state to receive payment.  The link will be sent with awardee letter and will be needed if the organization is not currently registered.
  • An estimated project budget can be uploaded into your application.  Download budget form here:​

Award Selection

  • All applications will be considered in a review process. 
  • Nonprofits, national service grantees, volunteer centers, K-12 and higher education institutions are eligible to apply. Potential applicants that do not satisfy the criteria to apply can collaborate with a nonprofit to submit an application.
  • Organizations are welcome to organize multiple projects for MLK Day and to apply for more than one type of project.
  • Ideally all projects will include youth, and priority will be given to project that involve youth in planning.


  • Grant awards will be in the range of $100 to $1,000 with no matching requirements.
  • Reviewers will evaluate applications based on community need and design, use of partnerships, number of volunteers engaged, equitable geographic representation and adherence to COVID-19 safety guidelines.
  • Funds requested should be commensurate with the number of volunteers engaged; the higher the grant request, the higher number of volunteers that should be engaged in the project.
  • Financial support for the project is being provided by Michigan Community Service Commission, Department of Health and Human Services, AmeriCorps the Agency, Youth Service America

Description of MLK Day of Service Opportunities

MI Masks+ for Children Project

  • Show your appreciation to important agencies in your region that are providing support for our children and adults by delivering care kits. Children are having to attend childcare, before and after school program, foster care, and other support organizations. These organizations need help to keep our children safe
  • Michiganders are known for responding to challenges with true resiliency and grit.  We help each other by sharing our talents and gifts.  
  • This project calls on residents from our great state to coordinate the making of masks and packaging other needed items for organizations supporting children.
  • Coordinate volunteers to sew adult and child sized cloth masks for childcare, foster care, before and after school programs, homeless shelters, and other child serving organizations.
  • Organizations have the choice of opting to only order mask kits or they may request additional funding to support their project to provide care kits for individuals or organizations to help with their response to combat the spread of COVID-19
  • An extra grant award can be requested to create care kits that include the masks, comfort items for children or adults.  Additional items for the organization like cleaning products and notes of appreciation to staff are also welcomed.
  • When requesting adult and child sized mask kits to be sewn into high quality masks.  The kits come in bundles of 100 and 500 ready to be sew.
  • To submit an application and order mask kits, please go to: 

Gift of Food for Frontline Workers Project

  • The pandemic continues to cause stress in all our lives and to those who serve in essential positions. Staff at facilities continue to manage the stress of supporting the testing for and care of COVID-19 patients.
  • The act of giving sustenance and food communicates caring and support demonstrates Michigan’s value of compassion.
  • Make and deliver a meal to frontline workers conducting testing and caring for COVID-19 patients.
  • Organizations to support can be in physician offices, urgent cares, hospitals that are doing COVID-19 testing and supporting patients during this challenging time of increased cases. 
  • Grants will be awarded to support organizations to create and deliver a package from the heart to staff.  The gift could include a nice meal, baked breads, baked treats, gifts of art, cards of appreciation and other items to thank staff for the continued efforts to help keep us healthy.
  • Get the community involved – ask school children to create artwork and cards of thanks.
  • The meal can be created by volunteers or with your help, a local restaurant can also prepare and deliver a meal.
  • To submit an application, go here:

Community Needs Project – Designed by Organizations

  • Applicants can design their own project idea to support communities overcome challenges during COVID-19.
  • Applicants can select from one of the focus areas including disaster services, economic opportunity, environmental stewardship, education, healthy futures, veterans and military families, racial equality, diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • To submit an application, go here:

Please refer questions to Melissa Sherry, MCSC Community Engagement Coordinator