WIC Shopper App available to help families
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News from DPHHS
Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) officials are reminding Montanans the free Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Shopper App is available to help families with their grocery shopping.
“We want to ensure that WIC recipients have what they need, and the app is one of the main tools that is available to help busy families,” said Kevin Moore of the Montana WIC Program. “The app includes many exciting features aimed at improving the overall shopping experience and modernizes how we are delivering services.”
The WIC Shopper App has various features to help participants better access their benefits and the available food items. The app allows users to:
— Scan the barcode to search for WIC food list eligible items
— Check benefits
— Locate WIC offices
— Find education about developmental milestones
— Search for recipes and life hacks for nutritious eating
“The WIC Shopper App has been a big help as we try to make the most of our family budget,” said Sabrina Rubich, Billings resident and WIC Participant. “It helps track benefits and includes great recipes. I highly recommend the app to other families receiving WIC benefits.”
On average, over 6,500 families use the app every month.
DPHHS is also reminding Montanans that benefits increased in September 2022. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which funds WIC, increased the monthly benefit to buy more fruit and vegetables.
Households will now receive $25 per month for children up to age five, $44 for those pregnant, postpartum, or partially breastfeeding, and $49 for those who are fully breastfeeding, for fruits and vegetables. On average, this amounts to a monthly benefit increase of 37% for Montana families. The last time the benefit amounts experienced this large of increase was in 2009.
WIC in Montana includes 29 local agencies and over 80 clinic sites serving all 56 counties and seven tribal reservations. In Montana, over 9,200 households are enrolled, benefiting over 14,000 women, infants, and children. However, only 55% of eligible families are signed up.
WIC eligibility requires participants to be pregnant, postpartum, breastfeeding, or fostering/legal guardians of children younger than five. Participants must also meet income requirements—making less than 185% of the Federal Poverty Level or qualify for Medicaid, SNAP, TANF, or free/reduced school meal programs. Specific WIC eligibility guidelines can be found on the DPHHS website.
WIC was created in 1974 to help families and young children during a critical time of growth and development. The program’s benefits include providing families access to healthy food, breastfeeding education, referral to other health and social services, and much more. WIC is a voluntary program, and participation does not interfere with other programs like SNAP or Medicaid.
To learn more about WIC or find out if you are eligible, go to: www.dphhs.mt.gov/ecfsd/wic/index. Families can also contact their local WIC clinic or visit: www.signupwic.com (signupwic.com).
The state office may be reached at 1-800-433-4298 or emailed at email@example.com.