Linda Vista students sing at Camarillo CROP Walk
Students from Linda Vista Adventist Elementary School sang at Camarillo’s 29th Annual CROP Hunger Walk in March. As the featured musical group, Linda Vista students sang “God Bless America,” led by Anne Blech, who teaches grades one to three. The young singers then invited the crowd to join in singing the final verse.
The annual event is sponsored by Church World Service and organized by churches or groups in local communities around the country. In Camarillo, it’s a cooperative effort of seven area churches of varying denominations.
The 200 walkers chose either a 5K or 10K route. “It was fun to walk on the CROP Walk and raise money to feed the hungry people,” said one kindergarten student.
"This teaches the kids awareness and to be a part of the community," said Ira Cornell, father of two Linda Vista students. The whole Cornell family walked, including their three children, ages 3 to 7. The two oldest children, Addy, 7, and Cali, 5, sang in the choir.
“The best part of the CROP Walk was spending time with my friends and raising money to feed the hungry people at the same time,” said student Andrea Frausto.
Nearly half of the Linda Vista student body joined in the walk and the music. The school has participated in the walk to support the fight against hunger for the past three years.
Members of the Camarillo church also participated. “Between the Linda Vista children and our members,” said Dennis Stirewalt, senior pastor of the Camarillo church, “Adventists were the largest faith group present, with a total of about 70 of us!” The Camarillo Church is one of the school’s five constituent churches.
Linda Vista has included in its curriculum a strong commitment to community service, of which the CROP Walk is only one part. Each month, students and teachers visit a local nursing home with a different group of students. “They play games, make cookies and read together,” a staff member said. “They sometimes sing to the residents and, at Christmas, the whole school goes to present a Christmas concert.”