Alley’s State of Obesity project has recently published a special series — SNAP Stories, produced by Upworthy and StoryCorps — highlighting the positive impact of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) on the health of individuals and communities. The series was commissioned by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the sponsor of the State of Obesity site, and produced in conjunction with Burness, a Washington, D.C.–based communications firm. State of Obesity was a clear choice to host the series, having generated a large and growing audience for reliable analysis and data on the health of our nation since launching in 2012.

Formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, SNAP is “the nation’s largest nutrition assistance program, helping feed more than 40 million Americans each month. Nearly two-thirds of SNAP participants are children, the elderly, and people with disabilities,” according to the site. It is a critical part of a set of national policies and initiatives that provide millions with healthy, affordable food. This in turn helps reduce the prevalence of obesity and obesity-related health conditions, which are the focus of the State of Obesity project.

The StoryCorps and Upworthy SNAP series features audio, text, video, and photography, telling stories of individuals in Alabama, California, Kansas, Michigan, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, and Washington. Stories were published throughout the fall of 2018 at

Alley is proud to work on a site that has become such a critical tool for informing citizens and policymakers about America’s health and strategies for reducing obesity, particularly among children.

“From the beginning, State of Obesity has been a model for how data, analysis, and stories could be modernized on the web. We’re pleased to help use the platform to tell the stories behind this vitally important program,” said Alley Partner Jeff Stanger.

The following are two examples of the SNAP stories:

Andrika Harmon and Kristi Gay of Alabama

Andrika Harmon talks with Kristi Gay, her nurse home visitor, about how SNAP helps her buy healthy food to support her young family while she is working and finishing college.

“Receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits helps Andrika Harmon buy healthy food to support her young family, including 9-month-old Zion and two stepchildren, while Andrika is working and finishing college.”


Max and Catherine Gage of Michigan

Sixteen-year-old Max Gage and his mother, Catherine, discuss the important role of SNAP in helping their family get the nutrition they need during a difficult time.

“It’s been huge to actually see firsthand what food does to us and our health, to see how it can turn your life around.”

Catherine Gage

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