CROP walk helps feed the hungry throughout the world

By Joe Bennett

April 29, 2012 Updated Apr 29, 2012 at 10:16 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill -- Experts say one in five children in the world goes to bed hungry each night.

Local advocates say those numbers apply here in Peoria as well; that's why local churches, food pantries and other humanitarian organizations came together to help stop hunger today.

Jody Pankey says she has been a life-long advocate to help the less fortunate.

Sunday she is walked to help feed families with little food.

"The groups and organizations that do things like this make sure that they are provided for, because we do not want any children to go to bed hungry," says Pankey.

Registration for the CROP walk began Sunday afternoon just minutes before the wet weather began.

Event Coordinator Jyl Krause admits that does bring down numbers compared to last year's 72 walkers who raised $87,000.

"Those people that we're serving have to walk every day to get their food, to get clean water, and so if we have to walk in a thunderstorm it's nothing compared to the conditions that those folks we're trying to serve walk in," says Krause.

She says Peoria-area food pantries have banded together to help raise funds from the CROP walk.

Twenty-five percent of the proceeds raised will go directly back to the community.

Krause call it, "...a good, condensed way for us to be able to give the twenty-five percent that stay in Peoria and divide it up for those food pantries that need help."

The CROP Hunger Walk is an international effort.

Other parts of the world where poverty and famine hit hardest also benefit from the walk.

"It makes me feel good and appreciative of the things that I have here and that other people don't have around the world," says CROP walker Laura Cohen. "I'm very fortunate and blessed to have food on my table where other people do not."

The international aid includes areas throughout the U.S. feeling the hardships of natural disasters like floods and tornadoes.

They too will receive charity raised by the these walkers, rain or shine.

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