Commentary: We need your help to make Walk & Knock another success


Clark County, so often overshadowed by that big city to the south, has much to be proud of.  One of these is the annual Interservice Walk & Knock food drive. Now in its 38th year, Walk & Knock is a unique, all-volunteer effort born here and unequaled anywhere else. It’s the nation’s largest local one-day food drive.  Take that Portland.

When Clark County Food Bank President Alan Hamilton attends food bank conventions, other cities brag of their food drives that bring in 30,000 or 40,000 pounds of food. Alan will smile modestly and reply: “We have a drive that routinely brings in 250,000 to 300,000 pounds of food.  Right here in little ol’ Clark County.”

While Alan depends on that huge food surge to fuel the food bank through the winter, what he really loves about Walk & Knock are the thousands of volunteers, mostly young people, who come together to help their neighbors on the first Saturday of December each year.

But after a three-year COVID-caused hiatus from our traditional porch pickups, that annual accomplishment is threatened.  People leave, refocus, forget. Thousands move here unaware of this great tradition. In short: We need help.

It’s an easy ask:  Gather a few friends — three or four is plenty — sign up and spend a couple hours picking up donations from front porches. No knocking this year for safety’s sake. Bring the food to a drop site and go have lunch.  It’s a fun morning that does good and makes you feel good for the approaching holiday season.

Even better, organize 20 people from your work, church, school or social club, and we’ll find a good place for them.

It takes 3,000-plus volunteers to collect our generous county’s donations.  That’s a lot of folks to manage, but it is what makes Walk & Knock unique and so successful in so many ways over the years.

As Uncle Sam put it: We need you.  Sign up at We’ll get back and tell you where you’re needed. Starting time is 8:30 a.m.

Even if you can’t volunteer, please make sure to put a bag out for our volunteers to pick up.  If you are unable to help or unable to contribute, we welcome donations on our website.

Thanks, and hope to see you on Saturday morning, Dec. 3.

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Tom Knappenberger is the president of Interservice Walk & Knock.