Why is Connecting to Community Resources Important?

A core component of the More than Food framework is connecting individuals with resources to help them address the underlying reasons of why they are in need of food. Because we know that food insecurity is rooted largely in poverty, the heart of our framework is helping people to address these root causes. Along the continuum, case managers offer individualized motivational interviewing to help people help themselves.

Case management is about meeting people where they are in terms of readiness for change. It's about helping people increase their education, improve their housing, address legal issues, or access affordable child care. Traditional pantries often provide passive food assistance with no additional supports. Many food pantries provide one-time referrals to services with no follow-up. Case management involves building relationships and a proactive approach to help people make and reach goals. 

St. Monica's church, hartford, ct

St. Monica's church, hartford, ct

The person providing case management services, called a case manager or coach, helps members set small achievable goals for making changes that, if accomplished, will boost their confidence in coping with similar problems in the future. The More than Food framework creates an atmosphere that helps increase members’ feelings of self worth and their ability to make changes in their lives, ultimately helping them build confidence so they can work toward longer-term goals.

Our research shows that the More than Food framework boosts confidence, which helps increase food security.

 

Case Management with Motivational Interviewing

Motivational Interviewing is a strategy that has been used in variety of settings, across different fields, to help people make positive changes in their lives. It is nonjudgmental, encouraging, client-centered, and goal-driven. This technique also conveys confidence, trust, respect, and reinforces clients’ feelings of self-worth.

All case managers or coaches who are working with the More than Food framework should receive training in Motivational Interviewing and the Stages of Change Model. Training modules, materials, a job description for case managers, and a manual for Motivational Interviewing can be found in the Resource Center.

Visit the Resource Center for tools and materials from the framework.