Exploring college food insecurity : a qualitative case study of the perspectives of the University of Central Missouri food pantry clientele
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Insufficient resources undermine postsecondary educational experiences and delay credit attainment for many college students (Goldrick-Rab, Baker-Smith, Coca, Looker, and Williams, 2019). To examine the efficacy of existing interventions, such as a campus food pantry, the researcher conducted a series of interviews with a cross section of volunteers, staffed leaders, and food pantry clients. The study produced 5 significant themes. 1) UCM students are balancing multiple responsibilities with a variety of stresses; 2) The Campus Cupboard clients shared an array of successful strategies for making ends meet while in college; 3) The reasons people use the Campus Cupboard vary from individual to individual; 4) Clients care about the food and services the Campus Cupboard offers as well as their experience while they are in there; 5) The volunteers and staff are the Campus Cupboard's greatest asset. They represent a variety of skills, abilities, knowledge, perspectives and resources for the cupboard and their clients. The recommendations focused on three core capacities that are critical for the Campus Cupboard. Specifically, to address the dietary struggles students face in higher education, as well as the living costs associated with schooling, this study constructs its recommendations focusing on 1) Building a culturally responsive food pantry; 2) Tailoring its outreach; and 3) Creating sustainable change.
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