Enrolling in WIC (Women, Infants, and Children)

WIC (Women, Infants, Children): A government assistance program designed to provide support and food assistance for pregnant women and women with children under the age of 5. Newcomer families that fit this category are encouraged to register with WIC. To qualify, applicants must be both income eligible and have an identified medical/nutritional risk factor.

BEFORE THE APPOINTMENT

  1. Contact the WIC office for your county.
  2. When you call the health center you need to have the following information to make the appointment:
    • Proof of identification: either a valid driver’s license, Social Security card, current work/school ID, current Medicaid card, current military ID, birth certificate, or immunization record. For infants: hospital crib card or ID bracelet.
    • Proof of Residence: either a current utility bill, valid driver’s license, current Medicaid card (or presumptive eligibility form), bank statement, current rental or mortgage receipts, or DMV ID card
    • Proof of Income: either current paycheck stubs or recent tax return for the self-employed, current Medicaid card, a letter of DSHS benefits, a letter from your employer stating gross income and frequency of pay, or unemployment letter/notice. 
  3. When you go to apply for WIC, please remember to bring only ONE of each of the following:
    • ​The name of the WIC applicant (either pregnant or postpartum mother OR child under the age of 5)
    • The applicant’s date of birth
    • The address where the applicant lives
    • Medicaid number
  4. ​Each person applying for WIC must be physically present at the time of application at the local WIC office (with only some exceptions).
  5. The appointment will take at least an hour, but you should allocate 2 hours to complete the appointment. You must arrive at least 10-15 minutes early or your appointment will be cancelled.
  6. Make sure you have appropriate car seats unless you are aware that the refugee family has them. Contact World Relief if you need to borrow car seats.
    CHILD PASSENGER SAFETY LAWS IN Washington State:
    • Birth-12 months: must ride in a rear-facing car seat
    • 1-7 years: (weigh less than 80 pounds) forward-facing car seat or booster seat; must be in accordance with the seat manufacturer’s instructions and meets all Federal Safety Standards in place when the seat was manufactured 
    • Children 8+: must be restrained by seatbelt    
    • Questions? Visit for Child Passenger Safety Law Summary

AT THE APPOINTMENT

  1. The Medicaid cards should have arrived and should be taken, but it is also a good idea to have their social security cards and potentially a Photo ID from the NC DMV. I-94s are also a good idea to have in case anyone asks for it.
  2. At the appointment, they will fill out forms and give the children a finger-prick test for iron.
  3. The family will receive vouchers for 3 months, each voucher having a specific window of use and expiration date. Make sure the family is aware of these dates.
  4. The family will be given a date to come back in 3 months and receive more vouchers.

AFTER THE APPOINTMENT

  1. If the refugee(s) are currently receiving case management from World Relief, notify World Relief that they have been enrolled in WIC.
  2. The vouchers can be confusing and it may be helpful to the family to take them on a shopping trip to coach them.
  • Grocery stores will have small purple signs posted along the aisles by certain items stating that they are “WIC Approved Items.”
  • Each voucher covers various items, certain sizes, and certain types only. For example, with WIC vouchers you may only buy the cheapest milk, bread must be whole grain, and only certain sizes of juice are eligible.
  • Each voucher must be used before its expiration date.
  • The client has to present the vouchers to the cashier at the time of check out and actually sign the coupon in the presence of the cashier. If the voucher is signed in advance it is void.