Article written by DPDF 2010 After Secularization: New Approaches to Religion and Modernity fellow Annie Hardison-Moody, Sarah Bowen, J. Dara Bloom, Marissa Sheldon, Lorelei Jones, and Brandi Leach, featured in the Journal of Extension, Volume 53, No. 6.
The project reported here evaluated the effectiveness of nutrition education at food pantries. We offer best practices for future Extension-based nutrition programming with this clientele. Three classes were offered at food pantries through the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP). Entry and exit surveys were collected for each series, including 24-hour food recalls. Seventy-three percent of participants reported an increase in vegetable consumption, and 82% reported positive changes in consumption of at least one food group. Nutrition education in food pantries is promising, particularly for Extension-led programs like SNAP-Ed and EFNEP, to address nutrition behaviors among food insecure populations.