ROCK HILL, S.C. - This year’s annual York County CROP Walk on Sunday, Oct. 25, will involve Winthrop students who are learning about hunger and surviving in tough economic times.
They will join hundreds of children, youth and adults expected to participate in this 32nd anniversary of what is South Carolina’s oldest CROP Walk to raise money to feed the hungry. York County’s CROP Walk has raised $551,982 in its 31 years, with $137,996 remaining with local agencies.
Winthrop’s Center for Career and Civic Engagement anticipates recruiting 18 teams from its freshmen class. The new students were asked to read the common book, “Growing Up,” a memoir by Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Russell Baker about his family’s struggles during the Depression.
Each team will have at least 20 students who are asked to “Raise Your Age” in dollars or canned goods for CROP. All canned goods will be donated to local food pantries.
Another 17 Winthrop teams will participate in CanStruction on October 24th. These teams will collect canned goods to build a work of art on the concourse of the Winthrop Coliseum. The designs will be hunger-related. The route of the CROP Walk will go through the Coliseum so walkers can vote on their favorite art project.
"For our new students, participating in CROP is a great introduction to our community and how we can work together to advocate for those in need and solve local problems," said Ellin McDonough, program director for Service Learning. "Our teams are energized to work alongside the Rock Hill community, and I can’t wait to see what they will accomplish on Oct. 25."
Also, Winthrop’s Center for Career and Civic Engagement and the Winthrop Wesley Foundation will hold an interactive hunger demonstration on Oct. 14 to educate students about hunger, its related causes and how to eradicate hunger. Barbara Thomas, associate director of the Charlotte office of Church World Service, will speak at the 7 p.m. event at Tillman Auditorium.
CROP Walk is the community hunger appeal of Church World Service. The organization represents 36 Protestant, Orthodox and Anglican churches in the United States working with indigenous churches and organizations in more than 80 countries.
On Oct. 25, registration and entertainment will start at 2 p.m. at the Dinkins at Winthrop University. The walk begins at 3 p.m. Participants can select between a 10-kilometer walk or a one-mile “mini walk,” both of which start and end at Dinkins. Admission to the walk is a canned food item, which will be divided among area food pantries.
For the past seven years, the York County CROP Walk also has sponsored a walk in York for those living near York, Hickory Grove and Sharon. The York walk will be on Sunday, Oct. 18, with registration starting at 2 p.m. and the walk at 3 p.m. at Trinity United Methodist Church on East Liberty Street.
To learn more about either walk, a Sept. 13 recruitment rally will be held at 2 p.m. at Trinity United Methodist and at 4 p.m. at the Wesley Foundation, 406 Stewart Ave., in Rock Hill. Organizers will provide more information about the walk itself, recruitment tools, and the online giving option. T-shirts will be available for $3.
Last year’s York County walkers raised more than $37,697 with $9,424 remaining in York County to aid Pilgrims’ Inn, the Meals on Wheels for the York County Council on Aging, HOPE in Rock Hill, the Fort Mill CARE Center and PATH in York.
CROP Hunger Walks continue to play a big role in bolstering area agencies, which have seen decreasing donations and increasing requests for help during these hard economic times. South Carolina has the fourth highest unemployment rate in the country.
For more information, contact the Wesley Foundation at 803/327-5640 or email Narcie Jeter at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
• Sunday, Sept. 13 – 2 p.m. recruitment rally, Trinity United Methodist Church, York
• Sunday, Sept. 13 – 4 p.m. recruitment rally, Wesley Foundation, Rock Hill
• Wednesday, Oct. 14 – 7 p.m. hunger demonstration, Tillman Auditorium, Winthrop University, Rock Hill
• Sunday, Oct. 18 – 2 p.m. registration, 3 p.m. CROP Walk at Trinity UMC, York
• Sunday, Oct. 25 – 2 p.m. registration, 3 p.m. CROP Walk at Dinkins Student Center, Winthrop University, Rock Hill