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To develop program impact briefs using Washington State University (WSU) Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) data by congressional district.
Use of Theory or Research
Geocoding was used to connect county-based program data into congressional districts. Geocoding is a form of spatial analysis that links information to geographic locations. It is often used in nutrition research to identify gaps in programming or assess access to food resources.
Washington State Senators, Representatives, and their staff.
It is critical to communicate the program value of federally funded nutrition education programs to decision makers. However, the WSU SNAP-Ed data management system, Program Evaluation and Reporting System (PEARS), does not divide data by congressional district. Many Washington counties span multiple congressional districts, so traditional county-based reporting does not communicate program impacts by federal or state legislative districts. This project used data from WSU SNAP-Ed reported into PEARS. SNAP-Ed programming ranges from direct education to statewide policy, systems, and environmental changes. PEARS data included reach (direct and indirect), qualitative impact stories, and descriptions of partnerships and activities.
We used a freely available online geocoding platform to add congressional district information to street addresses associated with WSU SNAP-Ed PEARS Data.
Ninety-nine percent of WSU SNAP-Ed evaluation data had an associated address and was successfully linked to a federal legislative district. Broad social media-based projects could not be linked to districts. We compiled data by federal district for number of participants reached by direct education; number of participants reached by policy, systems, and environment initiatives; number of indirect activities with nutrition messages; list of community partners; examples of program activities, and quotes and impact stories.
Geocoding software is effective for translating county-based program data into reports by congressional district. Reports showcase positive impacts on communities, particularly historically marginalized communities.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - Education.
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