California Department of Public Health's CalFresh Healthy Living program evaluation strategy presented at Association of SNAP Nutrition Education Administrators 2021 conference

Feb 11, 2021

The Nutrition Policy Institute (NPI) works in partnership with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and local health departments (LHDs) to evaluate CDPH's CalFresh Healthy Living (CFHL) program, which is known federally as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education Program (SNAP-Ed). Over 60 LHDs in California partner with CDPH to operate the CHFL program in ways that are consistent with state and federal guidance but responsive to local context. This non-standardized approach coupled with the size and scope of CDPH-CFHL present challenges for evaluation. Gail Woodward-Lopez, an NPI researcher, presented an overview of the CDPH-CFHL evaluation model and how the interrelated components work together to create a comprehensive nimble approach to evaluation aligned with the SNAP-Ed Evaluation Framework. The presentation took place at the Association of SNAP Nutrition Education Administrators (ASNNA) 2021 virtual conference. Woodward-Lopez presented on the development of intervention dose scores for assessing CFHL-CDPH statewide outcomes. Evaluation results using dose scores show significant associations between CDPH-CFHL school-site intervention exposure (or dose) with student aerobic fitness and student fruit and vegetable consumption. In the presentation, Woodward-Lopez also demonstrated how the CDPH-CFHL evaluation approach allowed NPI to make adaptations to capture the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic and state nutrition legislation.

By Danielle L. Lee
Author - Director of Communications & Research Engagement