Disclaimer: Moving Health Care Upstream is a collaborative effort co-led by Nemours Children’s Health System (Nemours) and the Center for Healthier Children, Families & Communities at the University of California- Los Angeles (UCLA). The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Nemours, UCLA or the Moving Health Care Upstream initia
For the past two years, Moving Health Care Upstream’s Policy Learning Lab has provided technical assistance to teams focused on food insecurity in their communities, helping them leverage local and organizational policy to address food insecurity on a community-wide scale. In this newsletter, we feature two resources that have been useful to our teams: the Healthy Food Access Portal and the Hunger Vital Sign National Community of Practice. Additional food insecurity resources, including a copy of technical assistance provided to each team in MHCU’s Policy Learning Lab, are available HERE.
Healthy Food Access Portal: A Go-To Resource for Increasing Access to Healthy Food
Launched in 2012, the Healthy Food Access Portal is an online resource hub for healthy food access advocacy and practice. Healthyfoodaccess.org reaches grassroots and grasstops national and place-based movement makers in creating jobs, catalyzing community economic development, and providing healthier food options. With over 4,000 unique users each month, the Healthy Food Access Portal offers resources, best practices, webinars, and case studies to support the planning, financing, and implementation of a range of healthy food retail models – from grocery stores to food hubs to mobile markets. Examples of what you’ll find on the portal include:
- A national directory of Food Policy Councils, to help you connect with and learn from others.
- Toolkits and other resources to help you increase community voice in your Food Policy Council.
- Information on how to join the Policy Network- to learn about influencing local, state, and federal policy efforts – including the cornerstone national policy effort, the Healthy Food Financing Initiative (HFFI) –and tap into your local food systems.
- Policy efforts, and funding, by state.
- Community Perspectives, showcasing work happening in communities across the country.
Hunger Vital Sign National Community of Practice
Co-convened by Children’s HealthWatch and the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), the NCoP works to facilitate conversations and collective action among a wide-range of stakeholders interested in addressing food insecurity through a health care lens. The overarching goal and purpose of the NCoP is to rapidly share leading best practices and data on food insecurity screening/intervention activities and strategies to scale what works.
Quarterly virtual meetings facilitate a collaborative forum and a venue where multiple stakeholders gather to disseminate research and best practices, incubate innovative ideas, and most importantly, collaborate in sub-groups to inform and influence large-scale policy and practice change resulting in evidence-based innovations to alleviate food insecurity and improve population health outcomes.
- To learn more about the Hunger Vital Sign National Community of Practice, click here.
- For additional information or to join the Hunger Vital Sign National Community of Practice, please contact Children’s HealthWatch Deputy Director of Innovative Partnerships, Richard Sheward: firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking for Real-World Examples?
The “Examples in Action” section of MHCU’s website spotlights upstream work happening on the ground, including innovative work to address food insecurity being done by groups like Healthy Tarrant County Collaboration and the Comer Children’s Hospital.