Food Insecurity and Obesity in WIC Clients






Final Products - March 15, 2005



January 28 "Deliverables"

Group A

Exploring the Links Between Food Insecurity and Obesity - word document

Exploring the Links Between Food Insecurity and Obesity - Powerpoint presentation

Group B

Focus Group Guide - powerpoint presentation

Group B Focus Group Guide - word document

Group C

Focus Groups in Action:  A Practical Guide - powerpoint presentation

Focus Group Manual - word document



The purpose of this project  is to examine the relationships between food insecurity and overweight in English speaking WIC clients so that food assistance programs can be optimally designed to reduce prevalence of obesity while encouraging food security.  Students will  work with Public Health-Seattle & King County  (PHSKC) nutritionists to organize, conduct and analyze focus  groups of WIC clients.  Students will also develop a report, briefing paper and abstract that will be presented and disseminated to state and local WIC administrators.   The project will be divided into  "deliverables."   Students will work on these deliverables in teams.



Phase One Deliverables due January 28

Team A - The Background

  1. Prepare a well referenced  briefing paper that outlines the current state of knowledge about the relationship between food insecurity and overweight/obesity and policies that have been proposed to address this relationship. This paper will be based on a search of medical and social work publications databases, the "grey" literature of web sites and publications sponsored by the government and non-profit organizations.  

  2. Prepare a 30 minute presentation for classmates and PHS&KC nutritionists.

Team B - Organizing and Analyzing focus Groups

  1. Using materials from your instructor or on reserve at the Health Sciences Library for NUTR 531 develop a plan for organizing focus groups of WIC clients, recruiting participants, reminder calls, greeting at the meeting, completion of consent forms, leading the group, co-leading the group, note taking, dispersing incentives and signing for incentives,  etc.

  2. Write a plan for recording and transcribing focus group data.

  3. Write a plan for analysis of focus group data.

  4. Prepare a 20 minute presentation for classmates and PHS&KC nutritionists about these plans

Team C - Conducting Focus Groups

  1. Using materials from your instructor or on reserve at the Health Sciences Library for NUTR 531 to  prepare a basic focus group leader procedure manual (that includes importance of confidentiality and Human Subjects issues and a brief discussion of the uses and quality of quantitative data)  for your classmates.

  2. Prepare a 60 minute basic training on organizing and conducting focus groups for your classmates. 

  3. Conduct a pilot of the focus group guide and procedures on January 14.


Phase Two Deliverables Due March 15

  1. Detailed Report

  1. Brief Policy Document

About 3 pages that can easily be scanned by policy makers in less than 5 minutes.  Key results and recommendations should stand out.  Data should appear in tables or charts.  The document should include a concise summary, bullets and plenty of white space.  

  1. A PowerPoint presentation that can be used for with food assistance policy makers and program staff -

Include points from briefing paper about relationship between food insecurity and overweight/obesity, focus group results, and some possible policies to address these findings in food assistance programs. 

  1. A 45 minute presentation to Stakeholders for March 15th.



January 7

Introduction and Background

Donna Oberg and Lisa DiGiorgio

  • What's WIC?
  • How is WIC organized, administered, staffed and implemented  in King County?
  • What are the basic eligibility rules for WIC?
  • Overview of progress to date on the larger multi-year project to improve food security in WIC clients.
  • Quantitative efforts underway to explore the relationships between food security and overweight/obesity.
  • Sites to be used in the Project
  • Starting resources

Donna Johnson

  • Expectations of students - "deliverables," due dates and level of commitment
  • Evaluation of student performance

Getting Organized

  • Divide into three teams
  • Meet with fellow team members and determine action steps and responsibilities

January 14

Work with team on Phase One deliverables.  Team C conducts pilot focus groups.

January 21

Work with team on Phase One deliverables

January 28

Present Phase One Deliverables

Divide into Action Teams and Plan for visits to WIC Sites

February 4

Recruitment and observation at WIC sites

February 11

Recruitment and observation at WIC sites

February 18

Focus groups at sites

February 25

Focus groups at sites

March 4

Work with Team on Phase Two Deliverables

March 11

Work with Team on Phase Two Deliverables

March 15

Group Presentation





Each of the briefing papers, plans, presentations, and implementation plan, demonstrates comprehension and appropriate application of basic concepts learned in class for cultural competence, evidence based practice, practical program evaluation, and strong links to assessment findings, and use of coalitions and partnerships. 85
Organization and presentation of final products 15


Successful participation in steps of phase one, data collection, data compilation and analysis, and policy development and program planning.  Evaluation methods will include evaluations from site supervisors and observation during classroom activities. 40
Role in phase one and final presentations 10
Rating of individual effort by other members of group 50

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