Annual walk for the poor slated for next week

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 15, 2011

Walkers get ready at the starting line at last year’s Walk for the Poor. This year the event will be held next Saturday at Christ the King Catholic Church. | File photo

There’s no better feeling than helping someone in need, and one local church is hosting a fundraiser to do just that – help the needy here in Covington County.

On Sept. 24, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul will host its third annual “Walk for the Poor,” a two-mile walk beginning at Christ the King Catholic Church.

The event works like a “walk-a-thon,” where participants gather pledges or donations in lieu of paying an entry fee, said Susan Gantt, Society director.

“You don’t even have to walk, if you don’t want to,” Gantt said.

“People don’t think there are needy, or even homeless, people here,” she said. “That’s not true. It’s here. All the money raised will be used locally, and this event allows us to share awareness about what we do.”

The group gives financial help in the form of utility payments, as well as distributes food from its food bank at the Catholic church. Clients are seen on Mondays from 10 a.m. to noon and then from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

“We’re happy to serve the community this way,” Gantt said. “Last year, the Society served more than 1,000 individuals in need. That increase placed a heavy strain on our resources. Our local funds are raised primarily through things such as the walk or a poor box in the back of the church.”

Last year, more than 60 participated in the walk, and this year, the group hopes to exceed that total, she said.

On-site registration will begin at 7 a.m. The walk begins at 8 a.m., and a participant breakfast will be held at 8:45 a.m.

Similar events will be held nationwide, most of which are held near Sept. 27, the feast of St. Vincent de Paul, the society’s patron.

For more information or to get involved, contact Paula Kelly at 334-222-0349 or call the Society at 334-222-4858.