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Do You Know WIC?

Do you know there is a program available to help pregnant women, infants, and children up to 5 years of age?

It is called WIC and is run by the Catholic Charities. The WIC program is a supplemental food program that has services for Mothers to be, new babies, small children and their caregivers. The caregiver of an infant or a child could be a Mother, a Father, a Grandparent or a foster parent. This program is designed to provide nutrition education. WIC offers breast-feeding support to Mothers.

There is also a benefit that provides money to purchase foods that are healthy and helpful for Mothers, infants and children up to age 5.

The WIC program was established as a permanent program in 1974 to safeguard the health of low-income women, infants, and children up to age 5 who are at nutritional risk. This mission is carried out by providing nutritious foods to supplement diets, nutrition education (including breastfeeding promotion and support), and referrals to healthcare and other social services. Find out more at fns.usda.gov/wic/about-wic-wic-glance. You can visit the New York State WIC web site for a list of foods that are available and approved for use for Mothers, infants and children up to 5 years of age at https://www.wicprogram.net/new-york-wic-food-list WIC benefits are not limited only to food. Participants have access to a number of resources, nutrition, breastfeeding counseling, immunization screening, substance abuse referral, and other health services.

(https://fns-prod.azureedge.net/sites/default/files/wic/wic-fact-sheet.pd)

There are income guidelines for the WIC program and you must live in New York State. You can call the local WIC program at 716-218-1484 for an appointment. If you have an urgent need you can call Catholic Charities at 856-4494. You can call NY Connects for information on the WIC program and other services and programs offered here in Chautauqua County.

NY Connects is different from other helplines in that they ask questions about your situation. NY Connects can not only give you choices about the services you think you need but they can direct you to programs you may not have known were available. NY Connects is a free service and is available to everyone. NY Connects works with you to get you the program or service you need in the easiest way possible.

We work closely with many community partners and not-for-profit agencies. The NY Connects toll free is 1-800-342-9871. Our local office numbers are 753-4582, 363-4582, 661-7582, fax 753-4844 or e-mail us at CCNYC@co.chautauqua.ny.us. Southwestern Independent Living NY Connects at 661-3010 or 450-3960. The state NY Connects Resource Directory can be found at nyconnects.ny.gov.

This is a great tool that allows you to search for services yourself. Call and/or visit NY Connects for assistance.

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