How did we estimate charitable food assistance participation in 2020?

The estimated number of individuals who received charitable food assistance (CFA) in 2020 is derived from two primary sources of information:

  • The Urban Institute's Well-Being and Basic Needs Survey (WBNS)
  • The Current Population Survey (CPS), December Supplement

Both surveys ask respondents whether they have received charitable food assistance in the past 30 days and past 12 months. 

How we calculate this estimate is shown in the graphic below:

graphic showing how the annual CFA estimate for ages 18 to 64 and the annual CFA estimate for ages 65 and up are derived from data from the CPS and WBNS and combined to find the 60 million CFA estimate

For more detail about the calculation, go here

 

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