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Food Insecurity: Putting Data Into Action

Meeting Basic Needs Locally

As a national nonprofit, the Military Family Advisory Network uncovers challenges that military families face globally. Our research, agility, and peer advisory board have positioned us at the forefront of local and national conversations, which has led to policy changes, program development, and national collaboratives.

As we look at our data, we know that not all struggles that military families face can be solved on a national level. Many problems, including food insecurity, require local solutions. As MFAN continues to shine a light on this issue on the national stage, we are also teaming with partners to meet the real needs of military families where they live.

Here’s how we will move ahead together:

  • Understanding the Baseline. Scientific research informs everything MFAN does. In three national studies, we have explored food insecurity among military families. Before the COVID-19 pandemic turned life upside down, one in eight of the families who participated in our research was experiencing food insecurity. Understanding this baseline enables us to create data-informed programs that can measure impact and change.
  • Building a Road Map to Prevention. The issue of food insecurity is complex, especially for military families. To work toward prevention, we must answer the question, “Why are military families experiencing food insecurity?” MFAN will conduct intensive research to answer that question, ultimately enabling our doctoral-level researchers to team with program experts to develop a road map to prevention.
  • Convening Leaders and Stakeholders. Collaboration is at the heart of MFAN’s mission. We believe in teaming with best-in-class partners who share our goal of meaningful impact. This is most clearly demonstrated by MFAN’s coalitions, including the Military Family Food Insecurity Coalition.
  • Evaluating Impact. The goal is to find solutions to food insecurity. Throughout all these efforts, MFAN will continually track the changes we are making toward understanding food insecurity and meeting military and veteran families’ other needs.

 

Highlighting Challenges Nationally

Frequent moves and separations, living far from family support systems, and challenges with child care and employment are just a few of the issues that military families face. But did you know? Some military families don’t qualify for the top resource that many Americans rely on for food assistance. Many military families are ineligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps. MFAN and our partners will continue to shine a light on this issue. No family should have to go without food.

 

Military Family Food Insecurity Coalition

In 2018, MFAN founded the Military Family Food Insecurity Coalition to create a comprehensive response to a complicated problem. The coalition is comprised of the American Red Cross, Armed Services YMCA, Feeding America, Food Research & Action Center, MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, MFAN, National Military Family Association, National WIC Association, Unite Us, United Service Organizations, United Way, and Wounded Warrior Project.

Join the movement to end food insecurity among military families. To learn more about our efforts and how you can join us, follow MFAN on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.