(SAN BERNARDINO, CA.) Dr. Martin Luther King’s status is showing wear. The 11-foot tall historic monument is deteriorating, the coating of paste wax has dulled, and the base is cracked. To solve the problem more than 30 local groups and community leaders have come together to carry out a sole mission of ‘Saving the MLK Statue’.
The Martin Luther King, Jr. monument has been a treasured landmark since 1981 when it was placed in front of the City Hall of the City of San Bernardino.
The statue is considered the first ‘bigger than life statue’ of Dr. King in the world. It now is in serious need of repair and warrants professional renovation and a plan for sustained maintenance.
The group quickly recognized that city funds are not available for the restoration and maintenance of the statue there will be an effort to raise funds from private and corporate donors, as well as, to seek grants and other sources of revenue.
“We are also committed to ensuring young and old people alike do not forget Dr. Martin Luther King, his mission and legacy and what the statue stands for: Civil Rights, Equality, peaceful co-existence, and respect for the use of power, the struggle, challenge and the plight for the Dream to live on,” said Francis Grice committee member.
Our goal is to have the statue renovated and ready for unveiling at a celebration scheduled for January 2013, said Grice.
The committee is in the process of procuring a contractor for the restoration. The initial renovation will cost approximately $8,500 with an annual maintenance charge of approximately $1,500.
The Black Culture Foundation has agreed to use their 501(C)3 as a conduit to raise and disperse the project’s funds.
The pressing need to restore the statue to its original condition and to insure its maintenance has become the impetus for public-spirited citizens of the greater San Bernardino area to commit themselves to the following objectives:
- To assure the ongoing maintenance of the statue through the creation of an Endowment, the income from which would be used for the maintenance of the statue including providing adequate insurance.
- To develop a master plan for the beautification and enhancement of the area immediately surrounding the statue including attractive landscaping.
- To create an educational component to the statue that would be used by schools in their teaching of American history, attract visitors, and serve to develop a greater appreciation of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
- To develop a master plan for the beautification and enhancement of the entire City Hall plaza area with the aim being to make it a tourist attraction.
For more information or to submit your donation in person, please contact any member of the MLK Statue Fundraising Sub-Committee: Joseph Williams (909) 754-1068
All checks should be made payable to: Black Culture Foundation. Checks may be mailed to: E. Garcia, P O Box 7288, San Bernardino, CA 92411.