Date of Award

2015

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

Dr. Lauren Davis

Abstract

Food insecurity is defined as the situation where people are not able to access enough food at all times for an active, healthy life. The 2012 food security report stated that 49 million Americans including children lived in food insecure households. Many individuals suffering from food insecurity obtain assistance from governmental programs and nonprofit agencies. Food banks are one of many non-profit organizations assisting in the fight against hunger. They serve communities by distributing food to those in need through charitable agencies. Many of the food distributed by the food bank comes from donations. These donations are received from various sources in uncertain quantities at random points in time. Working with this type of uncertainty in supplies can be very challenging. This thesis aims at developing a decision making model that will assist food banks to distribute supplies equitably as well as measure their performance using the pounds per person in poverty indicator. This model will also assist them in managing their inventory levels in order to meet the demand of aid recipients with the random supplies (donations) to the food bank.

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