De Faria headshot

Emerson Fellow

Max De Faria

27th Class, 2020-2021

Originally from Pawtucket, Rhode Island, Max received a BA in Geography and Spanish Language and Literature with a minor in Political Science from Clark University, dedicating their studies and professional pursuits to learning about the food system and food sovereignty. As a Nutrition Education Intern with Farm Fresh RI, they taught children ages 5 to 11 the importance of a healthy diet and supported vulnerable community members in accessing additional farmers markets benefits available to SNAP recipients. They also served as a SNAP Outreach Intern with the Worcester County Food Bank, supporting community members in applying for and accessing SNAP benefits. They have also worked extensively to advocate and campaign for environmentally just policy initiatives at local and national levels.

Field placement: California Association of Food Banks

Oakland, California

Max documented the impacts of COVID-19 on the state's emergency food system in collaboration with the California Association of Food Banks, which advocates on behalf of its member food banks to end hunger. In this role, Max collected, analyzed, and mapped data regarding food bank demand and distribution since the onset of the pandemic. Additionally, they interviewed food bank representatives and California food systems experts to identify opportunities for policy change to support food bank operations. Their report seeks to highlight the experience of food banks and their guests during the COVID-19 pandemic and provide policymakers with recommendations to support food bank operations now and in the event of another pandemic.

Policy placement: RESULTS

Max worked with RESULTS, a network of everyday people who advocate in order to influence political decisions that will bring an end to end poverty. They supported the U.S. Poverty Policy Team with research, writing, and legislative tracking of nutrition policy, authoring six blogposts on various aspects of nutrition and anti-poverty policy. During the 2021 RESULTS International Conference, Max organized and facilitated a workshop, "Participant Perspectives on U.S. Nutrition Programs: Learning from their Expertise", that engaged people of lived experience in dialogues on nutrition policy. They also collated media by or about RESULTS Experts on Poverty cohort and created a searchable library for future reference by the cohort and organization.

Publications & Blog Posts