SPINE Creates Partnerships to Equitably Connect Eligible Groups to Federal Nutrition Programs and Emergency Food
Launched Jan. 1, 2022, the State Partnerships Improving Nutrition & Equity (SPINE) program seeks to address food and nutrition security through equitable and sustainable actions that tackle economic and social conditions limiting food and nutrition security across the lifespan through a policy, systems, and environmental (PSE) change lens. NACDD provides training and technical assistance (T/TA) to nine states to build sustainable partnerships, programs, and services in communities disproportionately affected by chronic disease and the COVID-19 pandemic. Health equity, social justice, and developing strong cross-sector partnerships are foundational elements of the SPINE program and strategies to purposefully operationalize these elements are incorporated throughout all tailored T/TA opportunities.
Federal nutrition programs (e.g., Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program [SNAP], Women, Infants, and Children [WIC], Summer Food Service Program, etc.) and emergency food (food banks, food pantries, soup kitchens) connect those experiencing limited food and nutrition security to food. Many SPINE states are carrying out activities that equitably connect communities to federal nutrition programs and emergency food by working with partners across different sectors including, but not limited to, healthcare, business, and community- and/or faith-based organizations.
State Health Departments can serve as a central point for local- and state-level multi-sector partners interested in building collective will towards implementing innovative and evidence-based solutions to food and nutrition insecurity. NACDD is committed to supporting its Members and strategic partners with the tools, resources, and T/TA needed in developing new and strengthening existing partnerships aimed at improving food and nutrition security in a sustainable and equitable way.
Below are examples of how SPINE states are leveraging cross-sector partnerships to connect those in need to federal nutrition programs and emergency food, broaden the reach of their food and nutrition security activities, and make a deeper impact overall.