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Increasing Food Security: Highlights from DataKind’s December DataDive Events
December 22, 2022

We’re still riding the wave of excitement from our DataDive® events earlier this month all in the name of food security. Four projects, a DataDive Ask Me Anything, 300 attendees just for our kickoff event alone, and over 300 volunteers throughout the weekend. Whether you’re new to DataKind or a veteran DataKinder, we’re so honored and humbled by our global community which came together to dive into these data science for social good projects and boost the impact of these mission-driven organizations. 

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According to the latest update from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs: 

The largest global food crisis in modern history is unfolding, driven by conflict, climate shocks, and the looming threat of global recession. Hundreds of millions of people are at risk of worsening hunger. Acute food insecurity is escalating, and by the end of 2022, at least 222 million people across 53 countries are expected to face acute food insecurity and need urgent assistance. Starvation is a very real risk for 45 million people in 37 countries.

While data science can’t provide a solution to every problem experienced across the food cycle, there are key problems that data science can directly aid in solving. By examining the food cycle with a food security lens, we can identify opportunities to apply sophisticated analytics toward increasing the availability, accessibility, utility, and stability of food for individuals worldwide. This is a data mature problem where information, investment, and collaborations abound.

We’re so grateful to have the opportunity to partner with amazing organizations all working in some way to improve food security, and we’re excited to see what’s next. Learn more about the projects below.

Benefits Data Trust

We partnered with Benefits Data Trust to analyze neighborhood-level public data on the eligibility and uptake levels of SNAP benefits in the seven states BDT operates in, so that BDT can better connect individuals and families to the benefits and services that will strengthen their financial stability and access to available food services.

Save the Children

Building off of previous work, we partnered with Save the Children to create interoperable socio-economic datasets from disparate archives, the framework, and the tooling in order to maximize humanitarian response and food security interventions in Kenya and Somalia.

United Way of Wisconsin

Building off of previous work with local United Way Chapters, we partnered with United Way of Wisconsin to analyze trends in food insecurity using 211 call data to better predict levels of need for food programs throughout the year, so that more people in the state have reliable access to healthy food.

Viamo

We partnered with Viamo to analyze user lifecycle data from the Viamo platform to recommend improvements to the user experience and increase engagement, so that more people in low income countries and low resource areas can access reliable, on demand information about community support resources through mobile phones.

Our DataDive events remain one of the best ways to experience the energy, intentionality, and impact our work has in real-time, showing organizations how data science and AI can advance missions and volunteers just how powerful their skills can be. Below is just one of our favorite testimonials from the four-day event.

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DataDive events are catalytic for organizations keen to test multiple ideas in a really short period of time. Unsure which digital tool to invest in? Let the DataKind community build prototypes of them all. Suspect there are transformative insights buried in your data? A group of DataKinders will speed up the search.

Data science has a clear impact on strengthening food systems and reducing barriers to accessing food, as demonstrated by our work above but also with our previous projects: Identifying Food Bank Dependency Early with The Welcome Centre, Automating Data Monitoring to Help NYC Food Pantries Using Interactive Dashboards, and Predicting Wheat Rust in Ethiopia with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Learn more about our DataDive events here. For more information on our work in food security, check out the links below.

Recognizing Our Sponsors

The DataDive event have been made possible thanks to the support from Microsoft Philanthropies and Teradata Cares.

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Microsoft provides discounted and granted technology to nonprofits globally. Learn more at aka.ms/nonprofits.

Teradata Cares is dedicated to helping nonprofit organizations around the globe use data to tackle the problems they face every day. Learn more at Doing Good With DataTM

Sponsoring Future Events

Interested in sponsoring a future DataKind event? We’re always on the look out for partners and donors to support our projects and sponsor an event. Please contact us at partners@datakind.org to learn more.

Join the DataKind movement.

DataKind’s work is possible through the generosity of our volunteers, donors, and corporate sponsors. If you’re moved and can join us in supporting this and our future important work, please become a donor here. Every gift helps DataKind harness the power of data science and AI in the service of humanity.

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