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Informing our approach

Project Bread is committed to listening and learning from the communities we serve, aiming to reduce bias rather than replicate it. Understanding food insecurity — who it impacts, how it impacts, and how people access help — is critical to inform equitable policy priorities and our programmatic response.

We recognize and uphold the right of marginalized communities to have the resources they need to break down barriers and inform the best way to meet their own needs.

Through our research, we aim to better understand the barriers that individuals and communities face to access food and utilizing existing solutions, so we can better meet their needs.

Released August 2021

Barriers to SNAP and the role race/ethnicity play in the experience of Boston households

In March 2020, Massachusetts shut down to slow the spread of COVID-19 and food insecurity doubled. While this surge has impacted residents of all backgrounds, it has disproportionately impacted minority households, representing the continuation of a trend that pre-dates the pandemic. 

One proven resource in helping to alleviate food insecurity is the federally-funded Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP. State and federal actions to remove barriers and strengthen this program during the pandemic have helped many people access and afford food.

Indications that food insecurity is beginning to decline, with SNAP possibly having a role, brings urgency to our research to measure SNAP awareness, understand the perceptions that may impact a person’s willingness to enroll in the program, and learn about the experiences of residents when using SNAP benefits.

We have used these findings to inform our recommendations to dismantle any barriers that persist between those eligible but not enrolled, that may contribute to SNAP’s underutilization.

African-American dad holding his son Starts Line


Food Security is Health Care

Preliminary findings reveal that Project Bread’s Flexible Services program increases food security for patients and may offer health care cost savings.

As a partner in MassHealth's Flexible Services Program, Project Bread is treating food insecurity through the health care system to improve long-term patient health outcomes.

Since April 2020, Project Bread has piloted the Flexible Services Program with MassHealth and Community Care Cooperative (C3) in 14 Massachusetts health centers. The program is one of only few in the nation to provide comprehensive services to address the individualized needs of patients who are food insecure and have a physical or behavioral health diagnosis.

Food Security is Health Care Report Starts Line

Research & Studies


Research & Studies

School Nutrition

Reports & Studies

Addressing Food Insecurity in Healthcare

Reports & Studies

Historical Retrospectives

Children’s HealthWatch, in partnership with Project Bread, examine the history of food insecurity and hunger since the 1960’s.

Reports & Studies

Community Case Studies