WIC Benefits - Everything You Need to Know
Part 2 of 2 - How To Apply For WIC
How Do I Apply?
Applications can be found through your local WIC agency
. You can call the local office to make an appointment. Applicants will be advised about what documents they may need to bring with them to their WIC appointment to determine eligibility. Contact the WIC State or local agency serving your area to schedule an appointment. Applicants will be advised about what to bring to the WIC appointment to help determine eligibility.
WIC is considered a short term program. This means that the participant will move out from the WIC program when their certification period ends. The certification period is based upon whether the participant is pregnant, postpartum, breastfeeding, an infant or a child. Most individuals receive WIC for 6 months to 1 year. At this time, the participant must reapply if they wish to continue receiving WIC benefits.
What Foods Do I Receive With WIC?
The goal of WIC is to make it easier for you to provide delicious and healthy foods to your family. The foods offered by WIC are chosen based on the nutrients that women, infants and children need during pregnancy, while breastfeeding and during infancy and early childhood.
Some examples of WIC foods include milk, cereal, cheese, eggs, peanut butter, whole grain bread, juice, dried beans, tortillas, brown rice, infant cereal, baby food, infant formula, canned fish, soy milk, fruits and vegetables.
Breastfeeding Promotion and Support
WIC is proud to offer breastfeeding promotion and support. Research has found that there is no food better for a baby than breast milk. Breastfeeding offers much economical, health, nutritional and emotional benefits to both mother and baby. WIC offers support to breastfeeding mothers in the following ways:
WIC mothers who choose to breastfeed are offered information via counseling and educational materials.
Breastfeeding mothers are offered support through peer counselors.
Mothers who breastfeed are eligible for WIC longer than those mothers who are not breastfeeding.
An enhanced food package is offered to mothers who exclusively breastfeed their infants.
In order to help support the initiation and continuation of breastfeeding, mothers may receive breast pumps, breast shells or nursing supplements.
Farmers Market Nutrition Program
Another amazing benefit of WIC is the Farmer's Market Nutrition Program or FMNP. This program was established in 1992 and its goal is to provide fresh, unprepared and locally grown fruits and vegetables to WIC recipients.
Women, children and infants (over 4 months old) that are WIC recipients are eligible to participate in the WIC FMNP. These benefits are distributed via state agencies in the form of paper coupons that can then be taken to local farmers markets and other approved businesses.
The WIC program has been providing supplemental foods and nutrition education for many generations and those who are eligible for WIC will reap many benefits from participating in the program. For more information regarding WIC please contact your local WIC office.