WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator John Fetterman (PA) and U.S. Representative Glenn Thompson (PA-15) joined the Association of SNAP Nutrition Education Administrators and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics on Wednesday, July 19, in the Capital Visitor Center for a briefing on the role of U.S. Department of Agriculture-funded SNAP-Education programs in addressing United States’ ongoing nutrition and health challenges and opportunities, including the Farm Bill.
Trinity Allison, University of Illinois Extension’s Senior Program Lead for the SNAP-Ed program, was invited to join legislators and other national colleagues including Hyunjun Kim, Senior Co-Chair, ASNNA; Lauri Wright, President, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; Heidi Gorniok, Director, Community Nutrition, The Food Trust, Pennsylvania; Stephanie Johnson, VP of Government Relations, National Grocers Association; and moderator Marci Scott, VP of Programs, Michigan Fitness Foundation.
Valued Perspectives Rooted in Research
Allison provided a constituent’s perspective and shared the results of Illinois Extension/UI Health’s return-on-investment study. That study, conducted by the nonprofit health research organization, Altarum, analyzed the government’s annual $18 million investment in Illinois SNAP-Education and determined that the government receives between $5.36 and 9.54 in return for each dollar spent helping Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program participants make healthier choices through the state’s Eat.Move.Save. education programs. The return-on-investment figures are based on reduced healthcare costs and increased tax revenues due to higher earnings and longer lifespans resulting from improved consumer health. The summary of that research is available online in an impact report at go.illinois.edu/ILSNAPedImpacts.
Following the briefing, Allison shared, “Food and physical activity choices are complex, but SNAP-Ed seeks to make those choices easier by working alongside communities. As part of a land-grant university, we have offices in every county, so our SNAP-Ed team members live in and have a deep understanding of every community we work in throughout the state. Access to nutritious food and safe places to play create the foundation for healthy communities. A strong Farm Bill will allow us to continue to make that vision a reality.”
SOURCE: Trinity Allison, Program Lead, SNAP-Ed, Illinois Extension
WRITER: Bridget Lee-Calfas, Director of Marketing and Communications, Illinois Extension
ABOUT SNAP-Ed: Making healthy choices is not always easy, especially when families struggle financially. University of Illinois SNAP-Ed makes a difference by working with partners to reach Illinois families through engaging face-to-face classes or events, online resources, and healthy messaging strategies. SNAP-Ed participates in strategic local, regional, and statewide partnerships to transform the health of communities.
Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities. Illinois Extension is part of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences.