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MLK Association of Asheville
"Our LIVES Begin To End The Day
We Become SILENT About Things That MATTER"
-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

COPE Program

Due to COVID-19, most of our programming will be held online.

Martin Luther King Jr. Association of Asheville and Buncombe County, Inc. Community Outreach Providing Empowerment (COPE) Initiative

The Community Outreach Providing Empowerment (COPE) Initiative focuses on empowering residents living in Asheville and Buncombe County through educational outreach, workshops, seminars, and special events.  The Martin Luther King, Jr. Association of Asheville and Buncombe County, Inc. places great emphasis on the goals of Dr. King that foster economic development, affordable housing, and self-sufficiency.  The goals of the COPE Initiative are:

  • To provide year-round educational outreach to local communities
  • To provide programming that reinforces African American contributions in the areas of education and entrepreneurship
  • To instill community pride by sponsoring programs that reinforce the rich heritage of African Americans that created the foundation of Asheville and Buncombe County communities
  • To partner with like-minded organizations in our Stand Against Racism and Juneteenth Celebrations

Recent Events


African American Heritage

The African American Heritage Program provides education pertaining to local African American leaders whose contributions became the bedrock of Asheville and Buncombe County.  Information is shared with participants through various workshops and events that highlight education, civil rights advocacy, and community development.

African American Entrepreneurship

The African American Entrepreneurship Program examines the history of African American entrepreneurs in Asheville and Buncombe County.  It recognizes the rich history of the Eagle-Market Streets “BLOCK” location, as well as other African American communities in which entrepreneurship was the “Norm.”  The Program encourages youth to become entrepreneurs and seeks to foster partnerships with other organizations promoting entrepreneurship as a viable option of wealth creation, self-sufficiency, and breaking the cycle of reliance on government assistance.

Stand Against Racism

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Association of Asheville and Buncombe County partners with the YWCA of Asheville to promote programming that addresses racism, microaggressions, and fosters diversity and inclusion.  Programming is developed each year pertaining to the YWCA’s current theme.

Juneteenth Celebration

The Juneteenth Celebration provides educational outreach pertaining to the oldest known celebration that commemorates the ending of slavery in the United States.  The celebration emphasizes that two and a half years after the official ending of slavery through the Emancipation Proclamation, slaves in Texas were not told of their freedom until Major General Gordon Grander landed at Galveston, Texas with the news of freedom.

Funding for the COPE Initiative is through sponsorships and fundraising events in order for COPE programming to remain free to the public.

Current Sponsors










Christ School
Asheville Area Arts Council