Women, Infants and Children Nutrition Program (WIC)

Women, Infant and Children (WIC)

WIC is a government nutritional program for women, infants and children. WIC provides nutritional foods to low income pregnant women, new mothers, infants and young children.

Who is eligible for WIC?

The WIC program serves:

  • Pregnant women.
  • Breastfeeding mothers within a year of the infant's birthday.
  • Non-breastfeeding mothers within six months of the infant's birthday.
  • Infants from birth to their first birthday.
  • Children from their first birthday through the month of their fifth birthday.

Are there other requirements for WIC?

Yes. To be eligible you must be also be “nutritionally at risk” and be at or below the 185% poverty line.

What does “nutritionally at risk” mean?

People who have medical risks (such as pregnancy complications) or diet risks (such as a poor diet) are “nutritionally at risk.” A health care professional will decide whether you are “nutritionally at risk.”

What is 185% of the poverty line?

The federal government sets the poverty level. For 2004, a one-person household is below the 185% poverty line if the annual income is less than $17,224. For a two-person household, the annual income cannot be more than $23,107. For a three-person household, the income cannot be more than $28,990.

What is the goal of the Program?

The program is designed to:

  • Improve the results of pregnancies.
  • To lower the risk of infant death and low-birth-weight babies.
  • To improve the health and nutrition of infants and children up to age five.
  • To reduce health care costs through proper nutrition.

What types of services can I receive if I am in the WIC program?

  1. You get nutritious foods such as milk, cheese, eggs, cereal, juice, dried beans/peas, and peanut butter. Women who are breastfeeding receive tuna and carrots in addition to the basic food package. Infants receive iron-fortified formula, infant cereal, and juice.
  2. Nutrition education.People in the WIC program get nutrition education through one on one meetings, classes, etc.
  3. Referrals for medical and social services programs.People in the WIC program will be referred to other agencies such as Medicaid, TANF, food stamps and many others.

Who can I contact if I need more information about the program?

If you have questions or think you might be eligible for WIC, you can contact the Family Wellness Help line at 1-800-433-0746. You can also go to the WIC Web page. (The link is to the right of this article).

What if I am turned down for WIC?

You can appeal the decision if you are denied WIC. You can contact your local legal services agency for help with an appeal.

LSC Code:

Last revised: 4-2004

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