Walk & Knock, the nation’s largest local food drive, is back in Clark County for the 39th year.
Beginning at 9 a.m. Dec. 2, volunteers will go porch to porch gathering donations of nonperishable foods and toiletries for the Clark County Food Bank. Walk & Knock is mailing out 152,800 red-and-brown bags to households throughout Clark County to make it easy to donate.
Community members are also welcome to bring nonperishable food donations to participating Clark County Riverview Bank, Les Schwab Tire Center or McDonald’s locations beginning Monday. Participating locations — listed at https://walkandknock.org/barrel-locations — will take donations through Dec. 8.
“There’s still a great need with inflation and homelessness sending so many in search of food,” Walk & Knock President Tom Knappenberger said. “Every pound of food and dollar donated goes to the Clark County Food Bank for distribution to food pantries throughout the county.”
Each year, volunteers from local organizations, Boy and Girl Scouts, church groups, high school clubs, as well as hundreds of other individuals, help collect and sort thousands of pounds of food.
In the first year after the pandemic, Daimler Truck has joined forces with the nonprofit, providing access to its Cascadia electric semitrucks to help efficiently process donations. The Cowlitz Tribal Foundation and its partners are donating $50,000 worth of food to Walk & Knock this year.
“We are thrilled and amazed at how quickly each vendor responded to our ask to help serve Clark County while also keeping the donation in Clark County,” said Timi Marie Russin, Cowlitz Tribal Foundation manager.
Vancouver Lions Club members Bud Pasmore and Doug Rae started Walk & Knock in 1982 with help from the Hazel Dell and Orchards/Evergreen Lions Clubs. Without access to semitrucks, forklifts, pallets or many volunteers, the process took a lot longer, but that didn’t stop the two, according to Walk & Knock’s website.
Since then, Walk & Knock has grown exponentially. Knappenberger said he hopes for a big turnout again this year.
“One in four people in this county are suffering from food insecurity,” Knappenberger said. “Hunger is invisible, so there’s a big problem out there. We do the best we can to get the word out and help the problem.”
This story was made possible by Community Funded Journalism, a project from The Columbian and the Local Media Foundation. Top donors include the Ed and Dollie Lynch Fund, Patricia, David and Jacob Nierenberg, Connie and Lee Kearney, Steve and Jan Oliva, The Cowlitz Tribal Foundation and the Mason E. Nolan Charitable Fund. The Columbian controls all content. For more information, visit columbian.com/cfj.