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  FAQ about WIC

What is WIC?

WIC is a nutrition program that helps pregnant women, new mothers, and young children eat well, learn about nutrition, and stay healthy. Nutrition education and counseling, breastfeeding support, nutritious foods, and help accessing health care are provided to low-income women, infants, and children through the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program, popularly known as WIC.

What does WIC provide and who receives the benefits?

WIC provides nutrition education, nutritious foods, referrals to health and human services, breastfeeding support, and immunizations (at some clinics). Food benefits are issued for each client. Both fathers and mothers can receive and spend the benefits for their children.

Who is eligible and who can apply?

  • Pregnant women
  • Women who are breastfeeding a baby up to 1 year of age
  • Women who have had a baby in the past six months
  • Parents, step-parents, guardians, and foster parents of infants and children under the age of 5 can apply for their children
  • U.S. citizenship is not a requirement for eligibility

What are the income guidelines?

Households with incomes at or below 185 percent of the federal poverty income level are eligible. WIC determines income based on gross income. WIC counts all of the members of a household, related or unrelated. WIC counts an unborn baby as a household member. Click to view WIC Income Eligibility Guidelines (114K, PDF, viewing information).

What about fathers?

Fathers of children under the age of 5 are encouraged to enroll their children in the WIC program. Just like any other parent or guardian, fathers can bring their children to appointments, attend nutrition classes, and receive and redeem benefits for their children. Active participation by fathers is a great help in keeping WIC children healthy.

Are services free?

Yes! All WIC services are free to those who are eligible.

How do I find the closest WIC clinic?

To locate your closest WIC clinic call 1(800)942-3678.

How long can I stay on WIC?

If you meet the income and nutrition requirements:

  • Infants and children can stay on WIC until 5 years of age
  • Women who are pregnant receive WIC food benefits for the duration of their pregnancy
  • Women who are exclusively or mostly breastfeeding receive WIC food benefits until their baby is 1 year old
  • Women who are mostly or only-formula feeding receive WIC food benefits until their baby is 6 months old

What should I do to help the WIC program work for me?

  • Keep your WIC appointments. We've made this appointment just for you.
  • If you can't keep an appointment or miss an appointment, please call your local WIC office. Not doing so will delay your benefits, and you may lose some benefits.
  • Take the Texas WIC Shopping Guide and your WIC Shopping List to the grocery store to help you choose the right foods.
  • You cannot return WIC foods to the store for money or sell WIC food to anyone
  • Tell the local WIC staff about changes in your name, address, or phone number - including if you are planning to move.
  • WIC nutrition professionals tailor a personal nutrition plan for your family based on the interests and concerns you discuss during your WIC appointment. Take advantage of this opportunity during your next visit. And remember we've set aside this time especially for you!

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