Fifty years ago, the first CROP Hunger Walk took place in Bismarck, North Dakota. Only two short years later, community organizations and several area churches brought it to Muscatine. Now, forty-eight years later, this event continues to attract local support and bring in donations to help end hunger right here in Muscatine County and around the world. This year, organizers have ambitious goals to continue CROP’s important mission in our community.
Judy Brotherton, one of the longest serving organizers of Muscatine’s CROP Walk, first got involved with the event in 1985. She heard about it while at her church, Wesley United Methodist. She remembers, “It seemed like a fun way and a good way to raise funds to end hunger.” After participating in her first walk, she got behind CROP’s mission 100% and joined the Muscatine planning committee the next year.
In Brotherton’s words, “CROP Walk is a way to raise awareness about hunger in our community and around the world, and for Muscatine residents to come together with friends to raise funds to alleviate hunger.” This year on Sunday, October 6th, walkers will gather at the Muscatine Riverfront to walk in support of all people around the world who have to walk to get the food and water they need for them and their family to survive.
Before the event, walkers will raise funds to support CROP, with twenty percent of the funds raised going to the Muscatine Food Pantry and five percent going to Bags of Blessings, a local program that sends food home over the weekend for Muscatine Community School District students in need. The remaining funds will go to support world hunger alleviation campaigns. This year, Brotherton set a goal that walkers will raise at least $20,000 to donate.
If ending hunger both locally and around the world matters to you, Brotherton highly encourages you to get involved with CROP Walk. “It’s an easy way to help support local hunger agencies, and it’s also an easy way to help stop hunger around the world,” she said. Walkers can register in advance at www.crophungerwalk.org/muscatineia, or contact Brotherton at (563)- 264-5372 to get paper registration forms. Walkers may also register the day of the event at specially marked tables by the Riverfront. For those who cannot attend the walk, Brotherton encourages you to donate to the Muscatine CROP Walk either on their website or by giving your donation to a walker. Additionally, Hy-Vee will hold a Shop and Share event this week to benefit CROP Walk.
For forty-eight years, Muscatine’s CROP Walk has effectively supported many organizations working to end hunger. Brotherton hopes that with ongoing support, this event will continue to help those in need around the corner and around the world for many, many years to come.