Sonoma’s fifth annual CROP Hunger Walk is coming up on Sunday, April 6, when Sonoma Valley residents will take to the streets to raise awareness about global poverty and money to help end it.

The Sonoma walk is one of 11 to be held that weekend throughout the Bay Area involving some 5,000 people. CROP (Communities Responding to Overcome Poverty) Walks are held each year across the U.S. under the auspices of Church World Service (CWS), a consortium of 39 Christian denominations which works to alleviate global poverty.

Sonoma’s walkers are now beginning to raise pledges through their churches and other organizations prior to the walk.

On Sunday April 6, walk registration will begin at noon at the First Congregational Church, 252 W. Spain St., Sonoma. The one- or three- mile walk will begin at 1 p.m. followed by a brief celebration at the church.

Seventy-five percent of the funds raised each year by CROP Walks support the work of CWS, which has programs in 80 countries around the world providing famine relief, supporting self-help development projects (digging wells, providing tools and seeds, etc.), meeting emergency needs in the wake of natural disasters and aiding refugees. Twenty-five percent of the funds raised this year will remain in the Sonoma Valley to support the work of FISH (Friends In Sonoma Helping) and the Sonoma Overnight Support (SOS – the Haven).

Since 1969, CROP Walks have grown in scope and impact yearly. Last year more than 1,500 communities across the USA held hunger walks and raised over $15 million to fight poverty globally and locally.

Sonoma’s fifth annual CROP Hunger Walk is sponsored by a local interfaith group in cooperation with CWS. For information on participating and donating visit the CROP Walk website at and click on Sonoma, or call Rich Hacker, chair of the planning committee, at 326-4742.