TitleUtilization of Social Support among Food Insecure Individuals: A Qualitative Examination of Network Strategies and Appraisals
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsDavis, BAL, Grutzmacher, SK, Munger, AL
JournalJournal of Hunger & Environmental Nutrition
Pagination1 - 18
Date Published04/2016

This study explored the role of social support as low-income individuals endure experiences of food insecurity. The sample includes 37 participants who indicated being challenged by food insecurity and identified using social networks in some capacity in the acquisition of food. Data was analyzed following a grounded theory approach. Participants emphasized the utility of networks (family, friends, coworkers, and neighbors) and the value of resource exchange and pooling strategies to reduce impacts of food insecurity. Attention is given to the appraisal process, which includes assessing one’s own needs and resources as well as their network’s ability to offer help. Important implications for policy and practice addressing social safety net and food programs are discussed.