General information on the Women Infant Children program.
baby eating from bottleToday, President Obama signed the child nutrition bill, formally titled the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. I was very pleased to see it pass. In effect, it allots more money to the school lunch program, which provides free meals to children at school, and aims to make school lunches healthier. Both of these things are very important. I knew a lot of children depend on federally-funded school lunches, but I didn't realize that 31 million children rely on it. And it goes without saying that because of the number of children that are either overweight or obese, quality of food is a big deal. This is particularly true if a child's only "nutritious" meal of the day comes from school. While this doesn't apply to any readers here who are either expecting or have babies (and don't also have older children), it did make me think about the Women Infant Children program, or WIC, and the need for expectant or new moms to be aware of it.

What is Women Infant Children?

From the Women Infant Children website:
WIC provides Federal grants to States for supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and non-breastfeeding postpartum women, and to infants and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk.
I think it's a very important program for women to know about, particularly in this difficult economy when budgets are tight and jobs are being lost. From the website, WIC's target population is low income, nutritionally at risk:
  • Pregnant women (through pregnancy and up to 6 weeks after birth or after pregnancy ends).
  • Breastfeeding women (up to infant’s 1st birthday)
  • Nonbreastfeeding postpartum women (up to 6 months after the birth of an infant or after pregnancy ends)
  • Infants (up to 1st birthday). WIC serves 45 percent of all infants born in the United States.
  • Children up to their 5th birthday.
If you have concerns for yourself or your children and think you need assistance, please look at the eligibility requirements for WIC. From there, you can find your state's resource office.

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