The Effect of COVID-19 on Third Ward Food Distribution Attendance



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Food insecurity is defined by the inability or lack of access to nutritious foods. To address these issues in the Third Ward of Houston, the University of Houston Bonner Leaders program operates student-run food distribution programs. The Food Insecurity Team, FIT, has partnered with the Houston Food Bank to run 3 distribution sites. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and its profound effects on the Third Ward community, FIT sought to determine whether or not the COVID-19 pandemic had negatively impacted food distribution attendance. Attendance and the amount of food distributed from one of these distribution sites were collected twice a month over 5 months during the second half of 2021. This data was then visualized in order to perform a graphical analysis. By analyzing this data overlaid with COVID-19 case counts in Harris County, we can see that case counts have a minimal impact on clientele attendance. The findings also demonstrate clientele attendance and the total amount of food distributed to be continually growing. These findings suggest that the Third Ward food distribution sites play an ever-increasing and impactful role in the community and to the individuals attending them.