Food Pantry Use On An Appalachian College Campus As A Result Of Stigma

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Alisa Duong (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
A. Walker

Abstract: Food insecurity has become a pressing issue in the United States. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, an estimated 15 million households were categorized as food insecure in 2017 (Coleman-Jensen, Gregory, & Singh 2019). Perplexingly, in that same year, only 41.3% of these 15 million food insecure households had sought help from federally funded food resources (Coleman-Jensen, Gregory, & Singh 2019). The gap between those that are food insecure and those that seek help needs to be better understood and addressed. However, importance lies in differentiating between the factors stopping those that are food insecure from seeking help. Many have expressed that help could not be sought out because those that are food insecure are not aware that they fall into this category, while others have raised concerns that transportation to federally funded food resources is hard to find. Yet another reason could be the stigma that is associated with food insecurity and those that seek help from food pantries or resources of the sort. Indeed, other studies have identified social stigma as a lasting reason why food insecure individuals and families are not participating in programs that could help them (Fong et al., 2016; Fricke et al., 2015; Greer et al., 2016; Lens et al., 2018; Vancil 2008). It was especially significant that because those that were food insecure at a young age witness their parents not wanting to ask for help, once they reached college, they too felt they could not ask for help (Kindle et al., 2019). Sadly, food insecure individuals and families underestimate the public support for need-based use of food pantries (Kindle et al., 2019). The need to educate the general public and food insecure people to address and diminish stigma is dire because it could encourage those that are food insecure to seek and utilize available resources. Through this research, the study of stigma surrounding the use of food pantries on Appalachian State University’s campus is expected to help with the start of education tactics and awareness towards the topic in order to break such stigma.

Additional Information

Honors Project
Duong, A. (2023). Food Pantry Use On An Appalachian College Campus As A Result Of Stigma. Unpublished Honors Thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2023
food pantry, stigma, keyword analysis, sentiment analysis

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