Learn About WIC in Kansas
Kansas WIC is a federally funded nutrition program that provides nutrition and health education, healthy foods and other services to qualifying pregnant women, new mothers, infants and children. In addition to personalized nutrition education, local offices will provide monthly checks that can be used to purchase qualifying healthy food items that are essential to growth and development. Your WIC office can also refer you to other social services you may qualify for, provide free immunizations and health screenings and provide health classes on a variety of educational topics, such as meal planning, shopping on a budget, caring for a new baby and more.
Before applying for the WIC program, it is important to review the qualifications that must be met in order to receive benefits. Qualifications include categorical, residency, income and nutritional risk requirements. If you may qualify for assistance, you can submit an application at your local office by appointment.
What are the WIC requirements in Kansas?
Kansas WIC eligibility requirements must be met prior to the issuance of benefits and includes factors such as categorical, residency, income and nutritional risk. Therefore, it is important to learn more about each requirement in order to determine whether or not you or your child may qualify for assistance.
WIC qualifications can only be met by certain groups of individuals, such as pregnant women, postpartum women and infants and children under 5 years old. If you are a woman has recently given birth to a child, the amount of time that you may qualify for benefits will depend on whether or not you are breastfeeding. Women who are breastfeeding may be eligible to receive benefits up to the infant’s first birthday, while women who are not breastfeeding are limited to 6 months following a birth.
While WIC eligibility requirements cannot be met by other caretakers of children, including fathers, those individuals can still apply for benefits for a qualifying child.
There is a WIC program in every state throughout the U.S., as the program is nationally recognized. However, in order to apply for WIC benefits in Kansas, you must be a resident of the state. Nonresidents will be referred to their home state’s program.
WIC is designed to provide benefits to women and children that need the benefits the most. Therefore, there are income limits set for the program and, in order to qualify, your total amount of household income must be at or below the limit that is set for your household’s size. When calculating your household size, it is important to know that, if you are pregnant, any unborn children will count as an additional household member. Furthermore, these limits are reassessed each year as income limits are based upon the current federal poverty line.
The last Kansas WIC qualification that you should familiarize yourself with is nutritional risk. In order to receive benefits, you must be considered to have a nutritional risk that is based on a medical or dietary condition. However, there are a number of medical and dietary conditions that are considered to pose a nutritional risk including anemia, poor diet, overweight and underweight.
To learn more about requirements for WIC, download our free guide.
How to Apply for WIC in Kansas
If you would like to learn how to apply for WIC in Kansas, it is important to understand that an application cannot be submitted online or by mail. Instead, you must contact your local office to schedule an appointment. You may complete a WIC application during this appointment as well as provide the documentation necessary to process the application, learn more about the program and the benefits that are offered and cooperate with staff members as they review your eligibility for benefits.
If eligible for WIC benefits, you will be notified during this initial appointment. Therefore, it is very important that you learn more about this initial appointment as well as how to prepare for the appointment and the documentation that you will need to bring with you.
What can you get with WIC in Kansas?
Kansas WIC provides numerous benefits to qualifying pregnant and breastfeeding women, new moms and children who are under the age of 5 years old. If you qualify for WIC benefits, you can receive the following:
- Personalized nutrition education, information and support.
- Personalized tips that can help you and your child improve health and wellbeing.
- Referrals for services that can provide benefits to the whole family.
- Free immunization and health screenings.
- Breastfeeding information, encouragement and support.
- Nutrition and health related classes that cover a variety of topics including meal planning, maintaining a healthy weight, tips for picky eaters, caring for a new baby and shopping on a budget.
- Financial assistance to purchase healthy food items.
WIC checks are issued on a monthly basis. Depending on your nutritional needs, you will receive multiple checks in various food categories that can be exchanged for healthy, authorized food items. Each check will have a date listed that you can use begin using benefits as well as an expiration date as unused benefits will expire rather than roll over to the following month’s benefits.
Your WIC benefits may include purchases for items such as:
- Peanut butter.
- Baby food and formula.
- Various whole grain items, such as bread, pasta and rice.
- Fruits and vegetables.
- Canned meat.
However, when using WIC for a purchase, it is important to review your authorized food list carefully, as each category of food will be associated with certain restrictions and rules, such as rules related to the size of a package, additive ingredients and brands.
Learn more about WIC benefits by downloading our comprehensive guide.
How to Prepare for a WIC Appointment in Kansas
Your Kansas WIC appointment is an important step in receiving benefits from this program. Your appointment will serve as a way for staff members to provide you with additional information related to the program, benefits and how to use benefits. It is also the only way that you can apply for benefits as well as have staff members review your eligibility for the program.
When visiting your WIC office for an initial appointment, you must bring any children with you that may qualify for benefits. By doing so, staff members can assess your children’s eligibility as well as your own. In addition to your children, it is also important that you bring:
- Proof of identity for yourself and each of your children.
- Proof of Kansas residency.
- Proof of all household income for everyone who is living in your home.
- Completed diet questionnaires.
If found eligible for WIC benefits, you will be informed of your eligibility during your visit. If eligible, your appointment will also include nutrition education that is tailored to you and your children.
How to Check Your WIC Balance in Kansas
You can review your WIC balance in Kansas by reviewing the types of checks that you have remaining. As stated previously, you will receive numerous checks each beneficiary month with each individual check for a particular food category. Each of these checks will have a maximum dollar amount that can be applied to your purchase. You are not required to use all of your checks during one transaction.