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Kids learn lesson of inclusion at MLK Youth Leadership Summit

Kids around Vigo County spent their day out of the classroom learning a lesson on inclusion. Britany Harrison is a senior at North Vigo High School. She has been attending the summit since she was 11-years-old. Harrison said this is a way to meet new friends, but also learn the history behind MLK day.

Posted: Jan. 21, 2019 7:24 PM
Updated: Jan. 22, 2019 9:41 AM

TERRE HAUTE Ind. (WTHI) - People nationwide are giving back and learning what it means to live life like Martin Luther King Jr.

That includes kids all throughout Vigo County.

The annual Martin Luther King Jr. Youth Summit wrapped up Monday afternoon.

Middle and high schoolers spent their day out of the classroom learning, but it was a lesson they won't soon forget.

The lesson was the importance of inclusion.

Britany Harrison started coming to the MLK Youth Leadership Summit when she was 11-years-old.

She said this experience is a way for her to meet new friends in the community.

"Each school has a variety of kids that have a lot to offer, and you never know how they'll impact your life or your day if you don't speak up and say hi," said Harrison.

By speaking up, Harrison said she was able to meet students from several local high schools.

She even met a student that's home schooled.

It's this kind of exposure to others that creates acceptance.

"If our students don't have experience with or exposure to kiddos and adults that are not like them that are different than them, then we're never going to move that needle towards inclusion and acceptance," said Reed.

Reed said that's why building these bonds are so important.

Harrison said she does enjoy meeting new people in the community, but this experience is about much more.

"It's very important to our community to understand why Martin Luther King was so important, but for kids to have that touch with society, and not to be in the dark with their history," said Harrison.

Whether you came out to learn some history, or new things about others, many can agree the day was a success.

"It's very like heartfelt to see these kids and they're smiling and paying attention. They're not on their phones. Just a day without technology and just communication face to face it's amazing," said Harrison.

Harrison said this is her last summit experience, but she hopes others will consider coming in the future.

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