Electronic Publications from the Food Assistance & Nutrition Research Program No. (EFAN-04007) 274 pp

June 2004

Innovative WIC Practices: Profiles of 20 Programs

WIC provides supplemental food, nutrition education, and social service referrals to low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women, infants, and children younger than age 5. WIC has come under increased scrutiny as it has expanded rapidly, and some have suggested new directions for the program. This study examines a range of innovative practices at 20 State or local WIC agencies. The study focuses on practices in three main areas: breastfeeding promotion and support (including peer counseling and programs for high-risk groups), nutrition and health education (including obesity prevention, preventive health care, and staff training), and service delivery (such as home and workplace visits). For each innovative program, the report provides background information and discusses the source of the innovation, key challenges, implementation lessons learned, evidence of its success, and the feasibility of replicating the practice.

Keywords: WIC program, innovative practices, program operations, child nutrition, nutrition education, food assistance, Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, Food Assistance and Nutrition Research Program, FANRP

In this publication...