Food Security Focus Group Research Project

Report
Community
Hidden
Hunger:
Local & State
Perspectives
of Food
Security
WI Prevention
Conference
September 12, 2013
Overview
Defining food security
 Food security focus group
research project
Framing food security and it’s
relationship to community
health

Defining
Food
Security
Definitions
Food Security

Access by all people at all times to enough
food for an active, healthy life and includes
at a minimum:
 The
ready availability of nutritionally
adequate and safe foods and
 The assured ability to acquire acceptable
food in socially acceptable ways
Food Insecurity

Limited or uncertain availability of
nutritionally adequate and safe foods or
limited or uncertain ability to acquire
acceptable foods in socially acceptable
ways.
Prevalence of Food Insecurity
Food Insecurity Rates, 1996-2010
16
14.6
14
Wisconsin
Food Insecurity Rate (%)
11.4
11.3
12
10
United States
11.0
10.4
8.5
8.4
9.0
11.8
9.0
8
6
4
2
0
1996-1998
1999-2001
2002-2004
2005-2007
2008-2010
State averages mask regional
variation in food hardship
State averages mask regional
variation
Poverty is the most important predictor
of food insecurity…and yet,
More than half of food insecure
households are not poor
Community
Hidden
Hunger:
Food Security
Focus Group
Research
Project
Research Team Members
 University
of Wisconsin-Eau Claire
 Mary Canales, Nursing
 Brenda Kaczmarski, Nursing student
 Meghan Lynch, Nursing student
 UW
Extension, WI Nutrition Ed. Program
 Nancy Coffey, Nutrition Coordinator
 Melissa Gullickson, AmeriCorp
 Feed
My People Food Bank
 Emily Moore, Director
EC County Food Insecurity
1
in 5 children food insecure (Feeding
America, 2012);
1
in 8 residents reported food hardship
(FRAC, 2011);
1
in 5 residents participated in
FoodShare/SNAP (DHS, 2011);
2
in 5 children enrolled in Free or
Reduced Price lunch (WI Food Security
Project, 2011).
Research Project
Purpose
•
Explore meaning
of food insecurity
through voices of
food insecure
parents with
young children &
agency staff from
food assistance
programs
Methods
•
•
•
Community-based
participatory
action approach
Multiple
recruitment
strategies
Focus group
methodology used
to collect data
Focus Group Questions
 Based
on community advisory
discussion roundtable
 Key question: What is it like to be
food insecure?
 Theme 1-Why are people hungry?
 Theme 2- What does it mean to
be hungry?
 Theme 3: What is working?
Suggestions?
Survey Data Collected
 Parent:
 USDA
food security questions
 Household demographics
 Assistance programs utilized
 Staff:
 Job
role
 Work experience & education
Assumptions
 Experience
of being hungry different for
parents receiving government assistance
compared to those who do not
 Plan=separate focus groups
 Reality=include anyone self-reported
 Incentives necessary to recruit
 Plan=logistical & monetary incentives
would be sufficient to recruit desired
numbers
 Reality-= insufficient; required
connections
Funding
 UWEC
Office of Research and
Sponsored Programs (ORSP) studentfaculty collaborative research grants
 Summer 2012
 Academic Year 2012-13
 UW-Extension
(2012)
 Feed
District Innovative Grant
My People (2012)
Human Subjects
 Research
team members
completed human subjects
certification training
 Proposal submitted, reviewed &
expedited by UW-EC IRB
 Each participant signed consent &
received a copy for own records
 Requested & received permission to
digitally record focus group
discussions
Recruitment Efforts
 Met
with representatives from agencies
affiliated with food insecure population
 Focus Group Facilitator- personally
experienced food insecurity
 Compensation offered-$25 gift card
(grocery or gas)
 Convenient location-Children’s Museum;
included free admission
 Child care provided
 Snack & beverage provided
 Offered variety of dates & times of day
 Reminder phone call or email day before
Challenges Encountered
 Despite



initial interest, low attendance
Touched Twice Clinic: 35 signed up; 7
agreed; 2 attended (1 group)
ECASD: 7000 bookmarks; 30 inquiries; 19
attended (3 groups)
Augusta Area School District: 12 hours
visibility=1 signed up
 Stigma
associated with hunger negatively
influenced participation
 Without personal connection, limited
response
Recruitment Tool: Bookmark
Successful Recruitment
Approaches
 Connect
to staff affiliated with
existing programs; build upon these
relationships
 Ask staff to assist with recruitment &
invite potential participants
 Host in location familiar & easily
accessible to participants; provide
transportation
Results
Summary of Participants
Date
Focus Group Type
Number of
Participants
Time
Location
May 7, 2012
Pilot group-parents
2
9-11 am
Children’s Museum
July 16, 2012
Hmong Head Start parent
group
10
12-2 pm
September 11, 2012
Transitional housing & Abuse
Shelter
EC school district parent
group
EC school district parent
group
EC school district parent
group
Augusta & Fall Creek school
district parent group
8
9-11 am
Hmong Mutual
Assistance
Association
(HMAA)
Western Dairyland
3
6-8 pm
Children’s Museum
9
12-2 pm
Children’s Museum
7
12-2 pm
Children’s Museum
4
9-11 am
Fall Creek Librarycommunity room
Staff
8
3-4:30 pm
HMAA
October 3, 2012
October 5, 2012
October 19, 2012
November 12, 2012
March 1, 2013
Total
43 parents
8 staff
Results from Survey Data
 Over
 35%
half had 2 children or less
had children 5 years or under
 Majority
families
 23%
were couples or 3 generational
were minority population (Hmong)
 Over
half had annual income of $20,000
or less
Survey Results: Coping with Food
Availability
During the past 12 months:
o 72% participated in FoodShare & free
or reduced cost school lunch
o 50% participated in WIC or used food
pantries
o 43% reported they cut size of or
skipped meals almost every month
o 40% said they often could not afford
balanced meals
Focus Group Analysis:
Themes that Emerged
 Falling
through the cracks
 Struggling
physically & emotionally
with hunger
 Juggling
 Desiring
means
to meet life’s basic needs
healthy foods without the
Themes were
consistent for
parent and agency
staff participants.
Parent:
Falling Through the Cracks
…the day I call to say, ‘Hey, I got a
job. It’s a temporary position,
contracted 160 hours.’ As of that
day…she’s [agency staff] like ‘well,
you won’t get any food stamps next
month then.’ Meanwhile you’re really
hungry at work and haven’t gotten
paid yet. And then sometimes they
hold back a check, too. Yeah, it took
me 4 weeks to get my first check …
Staff:
Falling Through the Cracks
I think there are a lot of families that
are falling through the cracks, that
don’t qualify for programs, but still
aren’t able to feed their families,
especially if they have children. They
aren’t necessarily homeless families or
anything like that, but they’re falling
through the cracks.
Parent: Struggling Physically &
Emotionally with Hunger
 …when
there is enough [food], I can
sleep, when there isn’t enough, I just
couldn’t sleep – I can’t fall asleep.
 It’s
very different, because when there
isn’t enough [food], the stress level there
is just super high, kids will be nagging,
crying, and when you do have enough
it is exactly the opposite, everybody is
happy.
Staff: Struggling Physically &
Emotionally with Hunger
… she [Mom] said, ‘No, that’s your dad’s
cheese. He’ll be mad if you eat it.’ So
she decided to give him some, so she
got a little cup out and gave him about
this much shredded cheese to share
with his one year old sister. And then he
[son] said he wanted something else to
eat and she [Mom] said, ‘no you can’t
have anything more.’
Parent:
Juggling Life’s Demands
When we run short on food we go to
food pantries, free meal sites, just
to…okay it’s getting towards the end of
the month. We’re running short, we
have to find ways to stretch it. But I don’t
have a car so getting around is another
thing, so when I’m having to spend (buy
food) at the gas station it goes quick so
then you have to figure out how to
stretch it the rest of the month.
Staff:
Juggling Life’s Demands
We’ve had people apply and one of
the big obstacles for them is medical
bills, and unfortunately, our
applications don’t take into
consideration any medical bills. It’s
based on gross income, so that’s
tough for the families with medical
issues.
Parent: Desiring healthy
foods without the means
…I would just love to just be able
to eat healthy, you know, every
single day. I, if I had the means I
would eat healthy and feed my
kids healthy…
Staff: Desiring healthy foods
without the means
It has to be that we’re going to teach
how to choose it (other staff: uh huh),
what to do with it, how to prepare it
and how to store it. It’s a lot of things,
it’s the reading level, it’s the recipes.
Do you have the cooking ability at
home? All of those things, it’s pretty
complex.
ECC Food Security Action
 Increase
•
•
community awareness
Turning the Tables on Food Hardship Media
Campaign
A Place at the Table documentary film
event
 Educate
& mobilize health care
providers
 Foster coalitions & networks to take
action to address food insecurity.
Framing
Food
Security
Framework for Food Security
(USAID)
Access
Availability
Utilization
Wisconsin Food Security Project Framework for
Food Security
Economic
Context
that
Supports
Economic
Wellbeing
Strong
federal
food and
nutrition
programs
Strong
emergency
/charitable
food system
Affordable
and
accessible
local food
system
Understanding how poverty
impacts health
The cyclical
effects of
poverty
Broadening the focus of health
Connecting food insecurity to
health
Nutritional
deficiencies
during
pregnancy
Nutritional
deficiencies
Low birth
weight or
premature
birth
Overall poor
health
Cognitive,
behavioral
and physical
problems in
youth
Food
Insecurity
Chronic stress
and harmful
home
environments
Gestational
diabetes
during
pregnancy
Diabetes &
chronic
disease
Obesity
Lack of
availability
and access
to healthy,
affordable
foods
Food insecure and obese?
 Growing
body of literature primarily based on crosssectional studies, limited availability of longitudinal
studies

Difficult to determine causal relationship
 Most
consistent findings suggest relationship of food
insecurity and risk for obesity among
women…children (mixed evidence) and
adolescents (growing evidence)



Maternal stress/depression
Disruptive eating patterns (cycles of
deprivation/overeating & sacrifice food supply)
Consumption of low-cost, poor-quality foods
Some factors may place lowincome individuals at greater
Greater exposure to junk food marketing
risk for obesity
Lack of access to healthy, affordable
foods
Cycles of Food deprivation and
overeating
High levels of stress
Fewer opportunities for physical activity
ACTIVITY:
Creating a
strong
community
food security
infrastructure
Implications: How Can Food
Insecurity be Reduced?
Thinking of your community:






Identify root causes/contributors of food
insecurity
Brainstorm ideas to reduce food insecurity
Identify 2-3 ideas to move forward
Power Map the stakeholders you would
invite to the table
Conduct 1:1 interviews with stakeholders
Take action!
Identify1-2 food security related health issues of
major concern in your county/community
Nutritional
quality of
available food
Mental health,
stress,
depression
Housing &
Homelessness
Transportation
Limited job &
employment
opportunities
Livable wages
Educational
attainment
Alcohol & Drug
Abuse
Health Care
Access &
Quality of Care
Other – specify
_______________
Considering these issues, how can
the food security infrastructure in
your community be strengthened?
Food Security
Infrastructure




Economic Wellbeing
Federal food and
nutrition assistance
programs
Local food access
and availability
Emergency food
assistance
Your Ideas 
1.
2.
3.
4.
Identify stakeholders to bring to
the table
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
Group Discussion
Thank you!
Today’s Presenters
Mary Canales
[email protected]
Amber Canto
[email protected]
Nancy Coffey
[email protected]
Brenda Kaczmarski
[email protected]
Acknowledgements
Amy Korth
UW-Extension Cooperative Extension

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