CROP walk aims to raise awareness, funds to end hunger - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

CROP walk aims to raise awareness, funds to end hunger

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WAVERLY (KWWL) -

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and for many of us, it's a chance to gather with family and eat lots of food but in many parts of the world, every meal is hard to come by.  That's why some local groups are looking to raise awareness and funds to end hunger.

CROP hunger walks one at Wartburg College in Waverly Sunday have been organized in places across the country for over 40 years.  Church World Service started the effort as a way to raise awareness and funds to end world hunger.

"This is a way we can take our thankfulness for the blessings we have and put them into action to help others," said Al Charlson, CROP Walk Organizer.

Wartburg student Ellie Schwarz has quickly learned just how many people are in need of basic food, here in Iowa and around the world.

"Personally, I'm going to be a teacher.  So for me, I'm going to have hunger in my classroom.  There's statistics about how one in five kids are food insecure just in this area.  It's going to be something that's going to impact everything around us.  So for students, we need to be aware of those issues since we're going to be the future of the country," Schwarz said.

Donations collected from this walk will benefit Waverly's local food pantry, and church world service's efforts around the globe.  Participants here also have the option to give funds toward Self Help International, based in Waverly.  Self Help's director, Merry Fredrick, has traveled to Africa and Latin America and has seen how even small donations go a long way to helping provide for those in need.

"The gifts we receive that go to Nicaragua, for example, $65 will feed one child for a full year, quality protein maize porridge with vitamins.  As you can imagine, some of the children never get another meal during the day," said Fredrick.

Those walking here are just glad to be doing their part to help show how the generosity of Iowans can really make a difference.

"I think when you overcome hunger and poverty, that's when you have peace in the world," Fredrick said.

And CROP walks are helping reach that goal, one step at a time. 

Wartburg's CROP walk is the last of 80 walks held in Iowa this year, which collectively have raised more than a half-million dollars.

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