WIC Families Can Now Get Vouchers for Farmers Market Purchases
Wednesday, June 30, 2021
DENVER -- Participants in WIC, the federal nutrition assistance program for women, infants, and children, can now get vouchers to buy food at farmers markets across Colorado.
Starting July 1, WIC-eligible families will be able to get locally grown fruits and vegetables, and meet farmers, who frequently have cost-effective recipes for preparing what they grow.
Amy Nelms, healthy food incentive senior program and policy manager for Nourish Colorado, said the vouchers also open the door to a host of resources available at local markets that have evolved far beyond simple food stands.
"Kids activities, mobile food pantries, screenings for health," Nelms outlined. "Some of them do single dad, single mom days. And they're really offering resources for health and a space to connect with the community."
This year marks the first time Colorado is part of the federally funded Farmers Market Nutrition Program.
Families can find out if they are eligible for WIC, and collect farmer's market vouchers, on the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's website and contacting their local public-health office.
Nelms sees food as a cornerstone of health care. Fresh, nutritious foods can boost the immune system and have long-term health benefits.
She added any concerns about food assistance programs keeping people from re-entering the workforce are off the mark, because most Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and WIC participants who are able to work already have jobs.
"Most of the families that use these incentive programs, they are using them as a stepping stone," Nelms observed. "And the average amount of time anyone's using them is about 18 months. So, they're not these long-term programs that people use forever."
She added food incentive programs, including produce boxes, were critical for families and local farmers in the COVID health emergency.
There's also the Double Up Food Bucks program for participants in SNAP, formerly known as food stamps, in Colorado. The program matches SNAP purchases with dollars to purchase locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables.
get more stories like this via email
A California group formed after the firestorm that leveled the town of Paradise is stepping up to help Maui recover from its own disaster last month…
Skills for reducing violence are becoming essential in schools. At the beginning of the school year, students at a Washington state high school …
The age-old theory that opposites attract has been debunked. According to analysis of more than 130 traits in a study that included millions of …
A new report questions New York City Mayor Eric Adams' latest budget proposal for dealing with the city's influx of over 110,000 migrants. The cost …
A federal judge has blocked a 2022 Arizona law that voting-rights advocates say would have made it harder for some Native Americans to vote. House …
Thousands of U.S. auto workers remain on strike, and the walkout is being felt in Minnesota. A rally was scheduled this morning in the Twin Cities …
If states like Minnesota are going to meet their climate goals, experts say younger workers will need to step into the roles to make it happen - like …
Health and Wellness
In rural Arkansas, access to healthcare can be a distant dream - literally - as almost 60 counties in the state do not have enough providers to serve …