Date of Graduation

5-2015

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences

Degree Level

Undergraduate

Department

Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness

Advisor

Popp, Jennie

Reader

Rom, Curt

Second Reader

Fitzpatrick, Kevin

Abstract

In 2012 and 2013, Arkansas ranked first in the nation in food insecurity in both categories of “low food secure” (21.2%) and “very low food secure” (8.4%) (Lilley, 2013; Coleman- Jensen, 2014). In order to help address food insecurity in NWA, The Cobblestone Project developed a hunger relief donation partner, The Farm. (Cobblestone Project, 2013). In spring 2014, The Farm partnered with University of Arkansas to: • Better understand the demographics and need of hunger relief organizations • Calculate the impact of donations to hunger relief organizations • Assess satisfaction of donations from The Farm to hunger relief organizations • Explore ways that The Farm can positively impact the ability of hunger relief organizations to meet their goals of reducing hunger in NWA To meet these objectives, a series of three surveys (introduction survey; survey after donations; and final assessment survey) was developed and targeted to 13 hunger relief organizations that The Farm serves. Data analyses produced the following findings: Demographics and needs of hunger relief organizations: Statistical tests showed that there were no significant differences in demographics served (age and gender) between organizations that put different values on hunger relief in their mission statements. Additionally, there was no significant difference between the number of people served and the functional type (pantry, soup kitchen, in-house) of the organization. The impact of donations: 100% of organizations believed donors would find impact statistics from academic studies (such as this) as well as those developed by the hunger relief organizations themselves relevant. Satisfaction regarding the quality, quantity and diversity of the commodities donated: There is a difference in usefulness of produce that is easily prepared with known recipes and for large amounts of people. This survey showed bell peppers, cabbage, potatoes, zucchini, tomatoes, and lettuce to be considered most beneficial.

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