Skip Navigation Links
The WIC Program
WIC Info

The PHFE WIC Program

The WIC Program

WIC Makes an Impact

Who is Eligible

Find a PHFE WIC location near you

WIC Services

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) serves pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women, infants and children under the age of five who are low to moderate income (up to 185% of the federal poverty level) and at nutrition risk. WIC is a short-term intervention program designed to influence lifetime nutrition and health behaviors in a targeted, high-risk population.

WIC has a Mission. WIC gives our most vulnerable population the best possible start by providing nutrition education and healthy foods during critical stages of development so children achieve optimal nutritional status.

WIC is the Premier Prevention Program. The purpose of the WIC Program is to prevent anemia, poor birth outcomes, such as infant mortality and low birth weight, childhood obesity and to improve the nutrition and health of participants. WIC is a cost-effective public health program.

WIC Core Services include client-centered individual and group education, breastfeeding promotion and education, monthly food checks and referrals to community services.

WIC is a Nutrition Program. WIC participants receive prescriptive supplemental foods along with nutrition education, breastfeeding support and referrals to attain life-long benefits of good nutrition and healthy lifestyles.

WIC Provides Healthy Foods to supplement the dietary needs of participants to ensure good health, growth and development. The foods have been specifically chosen to provide consistency with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The selected foods also reinforce WIC nutrition education messages, address emerging public health nutrition- related issues including childhood obesity and provide wide appeal to the diverse WIC population.

WIC Enthusiastically Supports Breastfeeding as the ideal method of feeding and nurturing infants. Breastfeeding helps mothers feel close to their babies and breast milk contains the nutrients that infants need to grow and develop. Breastfed infants tend to be healthier since they receive antibodies from the breast milk which protect them against infection. It has been estimated that a minimum of $3.6 billion would be saved in medical care costs if current US exclusive breastfeeding rates increased to at least 50% at 6 months. WIC provides extra food to mothers who exclusively breastfeed their infants.

WIC is a Federally Funded Program. WIC is administered by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

WIC is National and Local. Nationwide, WIC serves over 9.2 million low to moderate income, nutritionally at-risk participants. In California, the nation’s largest WIC Program, 83 local agencies serve about 1.5 million participants at 650 local sites.

The WIC Caseload Reflects California Diversity. The majority of participants are Latino (78%), Caucasian (8%), African-American (5.5%), Asian (5%), and Native American (<1%).

WIC is Culturally Competent and Family-Centered. WIC providers are well-trained, experienced, culturally competent nutrition educators who are skilled at working with young families, local communities and special populations. Most WIC staff come from the community and speak the language(s) of the community; many are current or former WIC participants.

WIC has a Presence in the Community. WIC Centers are located in neighborhoods, often along public transportation lines and are an important community asset.

WIC is User Friendly. WIC participants trust and feel safe with WIC providers, who operate in an atmosphere of encouragement and empowerment with minimal paperwork.