Honolulu (KHON2) – The Hawaiʻi State Department of Health wants eligible parents to know about a new debit card and nutrition program available through WIC, or Women Infants, and Children.
Melanie Murakam, Branch Chief, WIC Services, explained the options and how they work on Living808.
WIC is the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children. WIC is federally-funded and the nation’s most successful and cost-effective public health nutrition program. The Hawaii WIC Program provides wholesome food, nutrition education and community support for income-eligible women who are pregnant or postpartum women and infants and children up to 5 years old. WIC gives moms and other child caregivers the resources, knowledge and tools they need to be successful.
During the last eight months, the Hawaii WIC Program has been transitioning from paper checks to eWIC (electronic benefits) statewide.
Murakami says that “eWIC is just like a debit card that provides greater flexibility in shopping for WIC-approved foods at local grocery stores. There’s even a free WICShopper app that allows you to check your benefits at any time to see what foods you have left in your account.”
The Hawaii WIC Program has continued to work on its eWIC launch during the COVID-19 emergency to ensure access to eWIC for residents across the state since the need is there for extra support.
WIC offices throughout the islands remain open and accessible by telephone. Current clients are encouraged to call their respective WIC office if they have any questions or need support. If you want to see if you qualify for WIC, visit http://health.hawaii.gov/wic. You’ll find information on how to apply for WIC, more information on eWIC, and phone numbers for your nearest WIC office.