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February 07, 2018

How Martin Luther King Influences Our Dreams

Every February we celebrate Black History Month and in doing so, we celebrate the great African Americans in our history who fought for equality and change. While there are many stories of advocacy, risk-taking, and empowerment, perhaps none are more widely known and celebrated than those from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

You may be surprised to learn that the words “I have a dream” were not in the original draft of MLK’s speech. In fact, his speech had been falling flat on the audience that hot August day. It wasn’t until Luther’s friend Mahalia Jackson whispered, urging him to “tell them about the dream.” And the rest has been weaved through our history.

While we celebrate these African American leaders, we think about the impact that their speeches, protests, and actions have had on our society today. Fight For Life Foundation in fact, exists in part due to Martin Luther King Jr. and the equality he fought for. Without him, without the Civil War, and without the 13th Amendment, Fight For Life would not exist.

Today, we look to MLK as an example to follow our own dreams. Our Founder and President, Marlin Jackson, created Fight For Life Foundation because of his own personal dream to impact the lives of at-risk youth. He grew up in a broken home that was ridden with drugs and neglect, but instead of following down the path that was laid out before him, he chose to follow his dreams. His hard work and talent allowed him to reach the University of Michigan, and then the National Football League, becoming an all-star Cornerback and Super Bowl Champion. Marlin has used Fight For Life Foundation in order to influence young kids who come from similar situations.

“I came to a point of realization and asked myself: What have I experienced both good and bad? How have these things affected my actions and habits? Where do I currently stand? And how can I use my experience to help others reach their potential? The vision and dream revealed itself more and more as I continued to proceed and grow.” -Marlin Jackson


Fight For Life exists to provide these young scholars with the resources needed to fight for a better life and to see their dreams come to fruition. This year, Fight For Life is introducing our Corporate & Community Partner Program that connects the values taught in Building Dreams to business and service industries. Business and community leaders along with their staff, will have the opportunity to relate each Building Dreams topic to their own personal work and experience. This connection will help students to better understand how each Building Dreams topic can be applied in different areas of life. Through this program we strive to create tangible learning moments for studentsa nd community service opportunities for businesses.

Fight For Life corporate partners will visit our Building Dreams implementation sites to speak to students about how Building Dreams values relate to their daily work. Find out more information right here.