Children Eating Well (CHEW) Smartphone Application for WIC Families

Grants and Contracts Details


Under a previous AFRI-funded grant (2011-68001-30113, 2/2011-2/2017; Husaini, PI), Dr. Pamela Hull (PI of new application) led development of the Children Eating Well (CHEW) smartphone application (“app”) for prototype testing. Leveraging our existing unique collaboration among Tennessee (TN) Cooperative Extension, the TN WIC program, multidisciplinary researchers, and student training programs, we propose to extend the CHEW app to the next phase of dissemination and implementation using an integrated approach that combines extension, research, and education. Our long-term goal is to eventually disseminate the CHEW app to state WIC programs across the country, reinforcing standard WIC nutrition education, to reduce risk of childhood obesity among limited-resource, preschool aged children. The overall project goal is to adapt, disseminate, implement, and evaluate the CHEW app designed to increase WIC family benefit redemption and improve diet quality and other obesity risk factors among preschool-aged children, while training the next generation of researchers and professionals. The objectives are to: (1) Develop and maintain version 2.0 of the CHEW app in English and Spanish, and disseminate it to the WIC program to implement in WIC clinics across TN (Extension); (2) Conduct process, outcome, and economic evaluation of the CHEW app implementation in the TN WIC program (Research); and (3) Train high school, undergraduate, and graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in the use of technologies for childhood obesity prevention (Education). The WIC program will give the CHEW app to around 70,000 WIC families with children ages 2-4 over four years. The process evaluation will assess staff implementation fidelity and satisfaction, uptake of the app by WIC participants (reach), user engagement, and user satisfaction. The outcome evaluation will compare intervention and wait- list control counties on primary outcomes (WIC benefit redemption rate; dietary intake) and secondary outcomes (WIC retention rate, all participants; WIC shopping ease, home food environment, child feeding strategies, and obesity risk factors). The economic evaluation will estimate implementation costs and conduct cost-effectiveness analysis.
Effective start/end date4/15/204/14/24


  • National Institute of Food and Agriculture: $2,524,922.00


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