CROP Walk set for Oct. 12 at City Park

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Salisbury-Rowan CROP Walk will celebrate its 30th birthday ó and a renewal in interest ó Oct. 12 at City Park.
CROP stands for Communities Responding to Overcome Poverty, and last year’s turnout exceeded any in the past five years, according to Paula Troxler, one of the organizers.
“We intend to do even better this year,” Troxler wrote in an e-mail. Four additional churches have signed on to participate.
Nine churches joined the event last year, 125 people walked and supporters tripled the amount raised in 2006 to combat poverty.
“We welcome individuals, workplace groups (and others) to join us this year,” Troxler wrote.
Registration and kick-off begins at 2:30 p.m. Oct. 12, a Sunday, at Shelter No. 1 (Lake Drive at Ellis Street). The walk begins at 3 p.m., and refreshments will be ready at the end of the walk.
The Salem Spirit Band from Salem Lutheran Church also will provide music when the walk concludes.
The Salisbury-Rowan CROP Walk is sponsored by the Rowan-Salisbury Ministerial Association, and 25 percent of money raised will stay in Rowan County to support Rowan Helping Ministries and Meals on Wheels. The balance of the money goes to Church World Service, which serves some 80 countries with relief ministries.
Church World Service is a cooperative ministry of 35 Protestant, Orthodox, and Anglican denominations, providing sustainable self-help and development, disaster relief and refugee assistance.
In the last five years, on average 16.4 percent of the funds contributed to Church World Service has gone to management, fund raising, and information sharing ó a relatively low administration cost for a nonprofit organization. The rest goes for services.
When CROP began in 1947, its primary mission was to help Midwest farm families share their grain with hungry neighbors in post-World War II Europe and Asia. In the beginning, CROP was an acronym for the Christian Rural Overseas Program.
On Oct. 17, 1969, a thousand people in Bismarck, N.D., walked in what may have been the first-ever CROP Hunger Walk ó and raised $25,000 to help stop hunger. Several other CROP Hunger Walks occurred soon thereafter, and before long there were hundreds of CROP Hunger Walks each year in communities nationwide.
Today, the event supports hungry people in developing countries, who typically walk many miles a day to get food, water and fuel. CROP Walks also continue to play a big role in the continuing saga of U.S. Gulf Coast rebuilding.
For more information or to register to walk, either as an individual or group, contact Troxler at 704-633-3716 or First Presbyterian Church at 704-636-1321.