Again this year, teams of volunteers from North Community Lutheran Church and Clinton Heights Lutheran Church will stride up and down North High Street on two consecutive Saturdays.

They won't just be getting exercise.

For the third annual Food for All project between the churches, volunteers will travel along North High Street between Morse Road and Clinton Heights Avenue on Aug. 19 distributing bags.

They will return Aug. 26 to pick up the bags, hoping to find some filled with food to be donated to the Clintonville-Beechwold Community Resources Center.

The purpose of the event is twofold, said organizers Martha Ratcliff of Clinton Heights Lutheran and Jan Patton of North Community Lutheran.

First is to provide more items for distribution from the center's food pantry.

Second is to bring greater awareness to the issue of food insecurity.

"This is our third year in a joint effort with North Community," said Ratcliff, a member of the Christian Action Committee at Clinton Heights Lutheran. "We try to get as many of our congregation as we can to help with the walk."

Usually, between 25 and 30 volunteers working in groups of two and three put in an hour each on both Saturdays, Patton said.

Last year, Food for All provided 118 bags to the resources center, Patton said. About 90 were from the homes where volunteers had left bags, with the rest coming from members of both congregations, she said.

"My personal opinion is anything will help, but obviously, every year we're trying to make the community more aware, so we do get a better response," Ratcliff said.

"This year the tweak was on Monday (July 31). A group delivered letters to businesses and churches on High Street that might not be open on Saturday," Patton said. "We found the response was wonderful. They were very glad to hear about this."

Some receiving the letter indicated they would provide donations.

"We'll have to kind of wait and see if that helps us or not," Ratcliff said. "We're hoping it does."

This year, Food for All will distribute a record 400 bags, Patton said.

"Especially with the additional push with the businesses, we're really hoping to get back 50 percent," she said. "Wouldn't that be wonderful?"

kparks@thisweeknews.com

@KevinParksTW1