Resource Library

COVID-19 Update: The John T. Gorman Foundation is curating a list of resources, emerging best practices, and innovative ideas from across the country to help local organizations serve vulnerable Mainers during the coronavirus outbreak. To access those resources, visit or enter Covid-19 in the keyword search. Those results can be further focused by using the “Filter by” menu above to filter by population type (Young Children, Older Youth, Families, and Seniors) or by clicking the following links: childcare, education, food security, housing, rural areas, and workforce.

The John T. Gorman Foundation strives to be data-driven and results based and seeks to promote information and ideas that advance greater understanding of issues related to our mission and priorities. In our effort to promote these values, we offer these research and best practice resources collected from reputable sources across the country. The library also includes briefs and reports the Foundation has commissioned or supported, a listing of which can be found here.


How COVID relief funds continue to feed one California county’s seniors

August 11, 2021 – SeniorsCOVID-19, Food Security

In response to the uptick in pandemic-related food insecurity, California Governor Gavin Newsom supported the “Great Plates” program in Spring 2020, which used federal funding to purchase and deliver local restaurant meals to seniors facing food insecurity. With the recent expiration of funds for that program, San Mateo County has decided to leverage its own COVID relief funds to continue a variation on the program through the next two fiscal years. #covid-19 #foodsecurity

Material hardship declines after Child Tax Credit payout

August 11, 2021 – FamiliesCOVID-19, Food Security

A new analysis of Household Pulse Survey data from the U.S. Census Bureau finds that fewer households experienced trouble obtaining sufficient food and paying household expenses in the two-week period following the first Child Tax Credit advance payments began on July 15. Comparing reported food insufficiency rates between adults in households with children and those in households without, the analysis shows a 2.6 percentage point decline in food insufficiency among households with kids after the credit was issued, compared with no decline in households without children. Trouble paying expenses declined by 2.5 percentage points among households with children in this period, compared with a 1 percentage point increase in reported difficulty among households without children. #covid-19 #foodsecurity

Spanish-speaking Hispanic households faced higher levels of food insufficiency during COVID-19

July 7, 2021 – FamiliesCOVID-19, Food Security, Racial Equity

New research from the Census Bureau finds that Spanish-speaking Hispanic populations have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. The research finds food insufficiency rates consistently twice as high as among English-speaking Hispanic respondents, and employment loss at 50 percent higher. The analysis suggests unique risks for food insecurity in this population, including greater income insecurity and loss of employment. Further, safety net supports like SNAP may be less accessible to Hispanic Spanish speakers due to language barriers, inadequate advertising of benefit program availability, or eligibility concerns. #covid-19 #foodaccess #racialequity

Legacy of housing discrimination leaves underserved neighborhoods without healthy food access

June 30, 2021 – FamiliesFood Security, Housing, Racial Equity

A study of housing patterns and food environments publicized by the Urban Institute has been published in Spatial and Spatio-temporal Epidemiology and demonstrates a link between housing discrimination and neighborhood investment. Using data from the University of Richmond, the U.S. Census Bureau, and the City of Baltimore, the authors find that “blockbusting”—when realtors “persuade white homeowners to sell their properties cheaply because of fears that people of color are moving into a neighborhood, and then resell those properties to newcomers for a profit” is associated with barriers to food access. Specifically, the authors find that areas experiencing historical and ongoing blockbusting score substantially lower on a healthy food access index than areas never subjected to the practice. #housing #racialequity #foodsecurity

Programs to help children in poverty overlap to supplement their needs

June 30, 2021 – Young ChildrenCOVID-19, Food Security

In 2017, approximately 92 percent of children who received Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits also utilized other government assistance including Medicaid, CHIP, SNAP, WIC, TANF, SSI, and Social Security. Most commonly, children received Medicaid/CHIP benefits in addition to SNAP (89 percent of SNAP recipients here), while only one in ten also received TANF. The piece suggests that the substantial overlap in program participation stems in part from similar income-eligibility requirements for each program, although program size and reach do not allow complete overlap. At the time these data were collected through the 2018 Survey of Income and Program Participation, an estimated 14.6 million U.S. children—or one in five—utilized SNAP benefits. These numbers are sure to increase in the pandemic, as overall SNAP participation has increased by around 13 percent. #covid-19 #foodsecurity

Successes of Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program provide model for summer nutrition, if made permanent

June 30, 2021 – Young ChildrenCOVID-19, Food Security

To compensate for missed school meals amid remote learning, the federally funded, state-administered Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) program has provided food stamp-like benefits to families and children who would otherwise rely on free and reduced-price school meals. Although designed as a pandemic response, the program has also addressed a critical gap in providing food assistance to approximately 30 million low-income children during the summer months. Early data from the P-EBT program revealed “the rate of children not getting enough to eat declined by 11 percentage points—which is more than a 30 percent reduction in the usual rate in this population.” #foodsecurity #covid-19

New research finds SNAP participants face barriers to a healthy diet

June 23, 2021 – FamiliesFood Security, Transportation

A U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service study focuses on the barriers that SNAP beneficiaries face in crafting a healthy diet. Using a combination of survey data, nationally representative of SNAP participants, and in-depth interviews, the research finds that 88 percent of SNAP recipients report barriers to accessing healthy foods. Three in five SNAP participants said cost prevented them from buying healthy foods, while 30 percent said lack of time to prepare healthy foods was a barrier, and 20 percent said transportation or distance to the store was. #foodsecurity #transportation

SNAP and P-EBT provided crucial pandemic assistance to food-insecure families – andmore needs to be done

June 1, 2021 – General – COVID-19, Food Security

Data from a MassINC Polling Group Survey of 10,000 Massachusetts households reveal 47 percent of families reported some level of food insecurity and many did not receive SNAP benefits when their incomes suggest they could have. Food Research and Action Center analysts note that “these findings underscore the importance of public education, outreach, and application assistance to connect more eligible families to both of these programs and other key public benefits.” The most common barriers for families receiving SNAP benefits were lack of awareness of eligibility or not knowing how to apply to the program.#covid-19 #foodsecurity