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Texas Food Bank announces new tool

STAFF REPORT

The Central Texas Food Bank (CTFB) launched a Food Access Convening Tool (FACT) which identifies areas where people face food insecurity, on Sept. 22. 

According to a press release, FACT is a planning and convening tool for mobilizing communities and resources. The tool was developed in collaboration with Feeding South Florida and Ryder and Howard University.  

FACT utilizes real-time data to map gaps in services within the organization’s 21-county service area. The new tool’s planning processes provide key demographic data and show the impact of strategies beyond food distribution like SNAP assistance and workforce development. 

It also analyzes food insecurity rates based on the latest census tracts and the Food Banks distribution reach to demonstrate the impact of the Food Bank’s efforts. FACT also serves as a road map by providing a better understanding of existing gaps in food access and helps CTFB plan where to focus its efforts and resources through partnership development and progressive community growth. 

“As the Central Texas Food Bank moves into a new era of innovation and addressing the root causes of hunger and poverty, FACT gives us an innovative, strategic and inclusive tool for helping us execute our mission of ending hunger in Central Texas,” said Sari Vatske, President and CEO of the Central Texas Food Bank.

FACT also uses “levers” to demonstrate how initiatives in addition to food distribution can help those in need. These levers can be turned on and off to display how different efforts can augment food assistance. According to a press release, FACT can also factor in workforce training and SNAP assistance and has the flexibility to incorporate additional features in the future.

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