Target Behavior: Healthy Eating, Other: Food Resource Management
Intervention Type: Direct Education
Intervention Reach and Adoption
Setting: Health care, USDA program sites (not National School Lunch Program).
Target Audience: Pregnant/Breastfeeding Women, Parents/Mothers/Fathers.
- Lessons that include nutrition education followed by hands-on cooking where participants prepare and eat a healthy meal
- CMATS WIC, where WIC clients practice shopping skills and experience a different venue besides the WIC nutritionist’s office to discuss using WIC vouchers.
CMP and CMATS WIC classes are incorporated into the WIC District’s system of nutrition education options for clients. WIC nutritionists in each partnering Georgia Public Health District are trained by Open Hand Cooking Matters (OHCM) staff in CMP and CMATS WIC curricula and facilitation. OHCM provides ongoing technical support, data management and analysis, and teaching supplies for WIC nutritionists to conduct classes. Individual WIC clinics recruit clients to participate in classes that include incentives like the opportunity for a hands-on cooking experience and a shared meal or the opportunity to earn a $10 grocery gift card to practice heathy shopping skills.
Steps for implementation, tracking, and evaluation:
- WIC nutritionists are trained in CMP and CMATS WIC
- Select clinics to participate in pilot
- CM for WIC supplies distributed
- Clinic staff recruit participants and incorporate CM for WIC classes into current nutrition education offerings at clinics
- WIC nutritionist conduct classes and tours at clinics
- WIC staff upload/submit data and participation logs
- Program evaluated yearly
CM for WIC programming utilizes two survey tools: pre-post session surveys assess healthy eating and food resource management practices and intention to change for CMP-adapted education sessions, and post-session surveys assess intention to utilize food resource management practices learned during CMATS WIC in-clinic pop-up tours.
Visit the Cooking Matters website for more information about materials associated with the CMP and CMATS WIC curricula.
Participants largely have positive feedback about the Cooking Matters sessions and higher levels of confidence are reported post-session compared to pre-session. Respondents enjoy the Cooking Matters classes offered at WIC clinics and report increases in confidence regarding the skills for a healthy diet on a budget. Many respondents reported that they were very likely to read nutritional labels to identify healthy foods, use MyPlate to plan meals, use their fruit and vegetable vouchers, and prepare a recipe from class in the near future.
An unintended outcome from implementation of CM for WIC in Public Health District 4 includes WIC leadership from two other Public Health Districts reaching out to OHCM, requesting to partner in order to implement the intervention in their areas. Recommendations in regards to setting objectives and choosing recipes for classes include focusing on one key objective per nutrition education session and choosing recipes that are simple enough for mothers to do with their children or while tending to children too young to participate in any aspect of preparing the recipe.
Evidence-based Approach: Emerging
|Readiness and Capacity – Short Term (ST)||Changes – Medium Term (MT)||Effectiveness and Maintenance – Long Term (LT)||Population Results (R)|
|Sectors of Influence|
MT2: Food Resource Management
- MT2b: Statistically significant increase in confidence in reading nutrition facts labels or nutrition ingredients lists. (p<0.001)
- MT2h: Statistically significant increase in confidence in comparing unit prices before buying foods (p<0.001)
LT5: Nutrition Supports Implementation
- LT5a: WIC nutritionists in 2 Georgia Public Health Districts are now trained in CM for WIC class curricula and provide ongoing program implementation in multiple WIC clinics in each District.
- LT5b: 4 WIC clinics in District 4 are piloting a social marketing campaign; 20 WIC clinics, including 3 sites in District 2, implement CM for WIC classes and CMATS WIC pop-up grocery store tours.