Participation Benefits

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All benefits are at no cost to participants.

WIC saves Money! By enrolling and participating in WIC services, families are able to save significant amounts of money each month. The money saved from the foods WIC provides can be used to purchase additional nutritious foods to complete a healthy diet. WIC nutrition education also helps caregivers to understand how to choose the best and healthiest foods for themselves and their families while keeping food costs down.

Women Receive:

  • All women receive supplemental nutritious foods, health screening, nutrition education specific to their needs and referrals to other health and/or human service programs as needed.
  • Breastfeeding women also receive breastfeeding support and information and may also receive nursing pads and/or a breast pump.

Infants Receive:

  • Breastfed infants receive support to ensure successful continuation of breastfeeding.
  • Non-breastfed or partially breastfed infants receive supplemental WIC approved formula.
  • After 6 months of age, all infants receive additional infant fruits, vegetables and cereals. Exclusively breastfed infants also receive infant meats.
  • Health screening.
  • Parent/caregiver receives education on infant nutrition and healthy, developmentally appropriate feeding practices.
  • Referrals for immunizations and other health and/or human service programs as needed.

Children Receive:

  • Age appropriate supplemental nutritious foods.
  • Health screening.
  • Parent/caregiver receives education on child nutrition and healthy, developmentally appropriate feeding practices.
  • Referrals for immunizations and other health and/or human services programs as needed.

Examples of WIC Supplemental Foods:

  • Milk or appropriate milk alternative.
  • Iron fortified infant formulas.
  • Infant fruits, vegetables, cereals [plus infant meats for exclusively breastfed infants only].
  • Iron fortified non-infant cereals.
  • Eggs.
  • Peanut butter or beans.
  • 100% whole wheat bread or tortillas, soft corn tortillas, brown rice.
  • Cheese.
  • 100% fruit juice [unsweetened] or tomato juice.
  • Exclusively breastfeeding women only: Canned tuna, salmon or sardines.

WIC Target Nutrients:

WIC supplemental foods are chosen because of the key nutrients they provide. These are nutrients of special importance to women, infants and children, and are briefly described below:

  • IRON – needed to make and maintain healthy blood, and to prevent iron-deficiency anemia.
  • CALCIUM – important to build and maintain healthy bones and teeth.
  • VITAMIN A – used for growth and maintenance of healthy tissues, good vision and a strong immune system to fight off illnesses.
  • VITAMIN D – needed for the body to use the Calcium obtained from foods.
  • VITAMIN C – helps to absorb Iron into the body from foods, supports a healthy immune system, and protects cells as an anti-oxidant.
  • PROTEIN – important for growth, and to maintain strong, healthy muscles and other organs of the body.

Nutrition Education:

WIC staff provides nutrition education individualized to meet participant’s needs. Clients can discuss their concerns about their or their family’s nutritional needs with WIC staff; a Registered Dietitian is also available to assist clients with special nutrition needs or “high risk” medical/nutritional conditions – for example low weight gain in pregnancy or anemia.

Immunization Referrals:

  • Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis [DTap].
  • Hepatitis B, Polio, Meningitis.
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella [MMR].
  • Varicella, Rotavirus, Hepatitis A.
  • Hemophilus Influenza B [Hib].
  • Pneumococcal Pneumonia [PCV 13].

Breastfeeding Education and Support

WIC supports breastfeeding and provides the information women need to make the best choices for feeding their infants. Most WIC staff are Certified Breastfeeding Counselors [CBC]; this means they have received special training about breastfeeding. For more information, please see our webpage about breastfeeding: “Breastfeeding – A gift of love”.

The Arizona WIC Program also offers a free 24/7 breastfeeding Helpline, staffed by Certified Lactation Consultants: 1-800-833-4642 .

Referrals to Health and Human Service Programs:

WIC provides clients with referrals to other programs and services according to their needs. Some of these services include but are not limited to the following:

  • Local emergency food programs.
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program [SNAP, also called “Food Stamps”].
  • Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System [AHCCCS – insurance].
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families [TANF].
  • Head Start or other child care services.
  • Children with Special Health Care Needs.
  • Infant injury prevention.
  • Family planning, immunizations.
  • Prenatal, infant and child health care.
  • Housing assistance.
  • Tobacco cessation and substance abuse programs.
  • School breakfast and lunch programs.
  • Job services.
  • Child support enforcement.