Freedom Ride

From August 14th thru August 21st, 40 selected middle and high-school students, from the Metro Detroit area, will take an educational trip on the 2017 Freedom Ride. This "ride" will tour various historical civil rights sites in Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, & Washington D.C.. The "Freedom Riders" (students) will be from various racial, ethnic, religious, & socio-economic backgrounds, and will be given activities to not only learn about the civil rights movement, but learn about each other as well. 



Now accepting applications for the 2017 Freedom Ride. Deadline for applications must be received postmarked by July 7th, 2017. 


Tour Itenerary

The Freedom Ride will take students to various historical civil rights sites through out the U.S. 



We are currently accepting donations for the 2017 Freedom Ride from corporations & organizations. Download sponsor packet.

You may donate on-line via PayPal by selecting from the following options:  

Youth Essay Contest

Open to all elementary, middle and high school students. 

Essay Question: Many state have implemented Voter ID laws. Please describe one of the purposes of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. did to protect a person's right to vote?

Contest Rules:

  • The essay must be no more than 250 words
  • Middle & High School entries must be typed, double spaced in 12pt. font. Elementary school entries may be typed or handwritten.
  • One entry per student.
  • Entries must include student's name, grade level, school, home address, and contact phone number. 
  • Winners will be chosen from each category. 

Award: $200 U.S. Savings Bond

Deadline: December 16th, 2016

Download Form Here



To award eligible applicants with scholarships for college tuition or books, full or partial expenses associated with travel on a civil rights tour, or place of interest determined by the Scholarship Committee.

Type of Award

Academic - $1000 (2 awards)
Travel - $200-$500 (to be determined by the scholarship committee)

Who May Apply

Any student who is a resident of Southfield or Lathrup Village.

How to Apply

Send the following information:

  • a complete application
  • a high school official transcript (not needed for travel scholarship)
  • Letters/documented community service (not needed for travel scholarship)
  • National Civil Rights Museum – Birmingham
  • an essay

Criteria Academic

  • Students must provide an official transcript of high school credit including 11th and 12th grades
  • Students must provide an acceptance letter from accredited college or university
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 or more on a 4.0 scale
  • Documented community service (school, church, community)
  • Original typewritten essay 250 words, entitled "How do you plan to live a life following Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and leave a legacy worthy for others to follow", (Essay must be typed double spaced).
  • Applicant must state which type of scholarship is being applied for; 1) college books, 2) full or partial expenses for civil rights travel on tour or other place of interest.

Criteria Travel

Civil Rights travel scholarship award is open to students ages 11-17 Sample Civil Rights Tours that are acceptable for travel scholarship awards:

  • Rosa Parks Pathways to Freedom Tours– Detroit
  • National Underground Railroad Freedom Center – Cincinnati
  • The King Center – Atlanta
  • National Civil Rights Museum – Birmingham
  • King Memorial - Memphis

Scholarship Determination

  • Scholarship recipients will be determined by the Scholarship Committee
  • Scholarship recipients will be notified by phone and/or mail.
  • Scholarship check for books will be paid to the college and mailed to the recipient.
  • Scholarship check for travel will be held until the proper time for travel on a tour, and paid to the travel sponsor or vendor

Send to

Scholarship Committee
Attn: Dee Hobbs
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Taskforce, Inc.
P.O. Box 200, Southfield, MI. 48037

Application Deadline

DEADLINE EXTENDED TO JANUARY 1st, 2017 - Download Form Here

Please Note: All sections of the application must be completed and all enclosures must be included in order to be considered. If any questions, contact Dedra Hobbs at (248) 910-2864.

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Youth Community Service Awards

The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (MLK) Youth Community Service Award is presented annually as part of the MLK Holiday Celebration in Southfield. Young people are accomplishing great things in Southfield and Lathrup Village just as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. did at an early age. Youth are learning a great deal about leadership, helpfulness and the spirit of community through volunteering. The MLK Youth Community Service Award is an opportunity to celebrate young people who give to their community through volunteer work. Download the nomination form. DEADLINE EXTENDED TO DECEMBER 16th, 2016. 

Peace Walk

January 16th, 2017 @ Hope United Methodist Church, Southfield, 9:30am -