All funds raised through this weekend’s annual Hunger Walk in Lincolnton will benefit local residents, Event Chairman Charles Stevens said.
Prior to changing the event from a Crop Hunger Walk to just Hunger Walk, only a quarter of raised funds stayed in the community.
“All the money now stays here,” he said.
After raising $10,000 last year, event officials, including employees and volunteers with Christian Ministry of Lincolnton, anticipate a minimum target goal of $10,000 for this month’s year.
In addition, the donor who collects the largest donation will receive a $50 gift card to an area pizza eatery.
Because the fundraiser is no longer associated with Crop Walk’s international nonprofit sponsor Church World Service, all packets and tasks associated with the Hunger Walk are compiled, organized and handed out by local volunteers.
Stevens, a retired clergyman from Pisgah United Methodist Church who has headed the event the last decade, has a heart for the area’s hungry population, noting how food is leaving the doors of Christian Ministry faster than it can be donated and restocked.
“There’s a great need because there are more people being supported through donations from Christian Ministry,” he said.
A large portion of residents who receive food through the local nonprofit’s LINC Home Meals Program, are now unable to pay, Stevens added.
For some, the service is the only thing keeping them out of a nursing home.
Lincolnton has hosted a hunger-related walk since the early 1980s, Stevens said, when Lincoln County’s then Ministerial Association established the event.
He noted that those who desire to walk but have yet to register or pickup a packet can still participate.
Stevens encouraged such individuals not to hesitate to bring their money and come out to the event.
“It’s a nice, leisurely walk through downtown Lincolnton,” he said.
Participants are also asked to drop off canned goods for Christian Ministry.
The Hunger Walk will start 2:30 p.m. in the back parking lot of the organization, located at 207 South Poplar Street in Lincolnton. Registration packets will be available 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. today.
People may also call the facility at (704) 732-0383 with questions during that time frame.