Learn About WIC in Kentucky
Kentucky WIC is the state’s federally funded nutritional program that seeks to provide numerous benefits to qualifying low-income women, infants and children. The program provides numerous benefits, including breastfeeding support, referrals to other social services, a monthly allotment for nutritious foods and personalized nutritional education and guidance. Your local WIC office accepts applications in person by appointment as online and by mail applications are not accepted at this time. During your initial appointment, you will be provided further information regarding program benefits and your eligibility will be determined.
The WIC program has numerous eligibility requirements that must be met before you can receive any benefits. These requirements include residency, income and nutritional risk. Furthermore, benefits can only be supplied to select groups of individuals, including pregnant women, postpartum women and infants and children who are younger than five years of age.
What are the WIC requirements in Kentucky?
Before asking, “Where is a Kentucky WIC office near me?” it is important to review the program’s eligibility requirements in order to determine whether or not you may or may not qualify for benefits. WIC eligibility requirements are categorical, income, residency and nutritional risk based and each requirement must be met before benefits will be issued.
WIC only provides benefits to individuals who meet categorical requirements. As such, assistance is only provided to:
- Women who are currently pregnant.
- Postpartum women who are breastfeeding, up to the infant’s first birthday.
- Postpartum women who are not breastfeeding, up to six months following the end of a pregnancy.
- Infants and children up to five years of age.
While WIC qualifications cannot be met by other forms of caretakers, including fathers, other caretakers may still apply for benefits for a qualifying child.
There is a WIC program in every state in the United States as the program is recognized nationally. However, in order to apply for benefits in Kentucky, you must be a resident of the state. You will be referred to your home state’s program if you are not.
Your KY WIC office will determine whether or not you and your children have a nutritional risk. Nutritional risk is caused by a variety medical or dietary conditions, including poor diet, under or overweight, anemia and a history of poor pregnancy outcomes.
Finally, WIC only provides benefits to individuals and families with limited income. For that reason, there are income limits set for the program. In order to receive assistance, you must be at or below these limits. When determining your household size, the prominent factor in assessing your income limit, it is worth knowing that unborn children each count as an additional household member. These limits are reassessed on an annual basis as limits are determined by the current federal poverty line.
You will automatically meet WIC eligibility requirements related to income if you are currently receiving assistance from another eligible state program, such as TANF, Medicaid or SNAP (food stamps).
How to Apply for WIC in Kentucky
To submit a Kentucky WIC application, you must first contact your local office and schedule an appointment. This appointment will serve several purposes, such as determining whether or not you are eligible to receive benefits, providing further information on the program, teaching you how to use benefits and providing you with initial benefits.
WIC online applications and mail-in applications are not currently available within the state. It is also worth knowing that most local agencies will not accept walk-in applications as appointments are often a necessity.
Get further details on the WIC application process in Kentucky by downloading our complete guide.
What can you get with WIC in Kentucky?
The WIC program provides numerous benefits to eligible applicants, including:
- Personalized nutrition education and services.
- Breastfeeding information, promotion and support.
- Referrals to heath care services and other social services that a family may qualify for.
- Free immunizations and health screening.
- Monthly financial assistance towards the purchase of nutritious food items.
WIC checks are no longer provided in Kentucky as the state has opted to use an eWIC card. The eWIC card provides numerous benefits as you can use this card similarly to a debit card. This will allow for faster checkouts and a general ease when tracking benefits and food balances. Furthermore, you will no longer be required to visit your local office each month as benefits will be automatically distributed onto cards.
Your WIC benefits in Kentucky may differ, depending on your family size and your nutrition. However, you may be able to purchase items such as:
- Canned fish.
- Fruits and vegetables.
- Breakfast cereal.
- Whole grain items.
When using WIC in Kentucky, it is important to review your authorized food list before every purchase. Authorized foods have several rules and restrictions, including brand restrictions, size rules and restrictions for certain food ingredients.
Learn more about which foods you can buy with Kentucky WIC benefits by downloading our comprehensive guide.
How to Prepare for a WIC Appointment in Kentucky
It is important to prepare for your WIC appointment as this appointment will provide you with a wealth of knowledge about the program as well as determine the eligibility of you and your children. Therefore, it is very important that you prepare for your appointment to the best of your ability.
When visiting your WIC office, you will be required to bring to your scheduled appointment any children that may qualify for benefits. This is to allow staff members at the location to determine whether or not your children may be eligible for benefits as well as discuss personalized nutrition information for each child.
When applying for WIC, you must also provide your local office with the following documents:
- Proof of identity for yourself and each applying child
- Proof of your residential address
- Proof of your household’s income
As stated previously, you may automatically meet income related requirements if you are already receiving assistance from a program such as TANF, SNAP or Medicaid.
If you qualify for WIC benefits, you will be provided with simple health and diet screenings to asset your nutritional and health needs during your visit as well as provided with an eWIC card that can be used for your monthly food benefits.
How to Check Your WIC Balance in Kentucky
Kentucky WIC utilizes eWIC cards rather than paper checks, which makes it easier to review your remaining food balance as well as the date that current benefits will expire. Benefits do not roll over to the following month, so it is important to use benefits before they are lost.
To check your WIC balance in Kentucky, you may call the number that is listed on the back of your eWIC card. In addition to this contact number, you will also receive a receipt of your remaining food balance after each purchase made with your eWIC card.