View Full Version : Is anyone on food stamps or WIC?

02-23-2009, 06:33 PM
When my father was out of work in 1979, my family was on food stamps and WIC. And it wasn't a big deal, as far as I was concerned.

But now, I'm unemployed and my unemployment checks are less than half of what I was earning when I had my job. My wife is going to have our baby any day now. When she goes on maternity leave, she will be making 65% of her paycheck for about six weeks.

Meanwhile, I've been watching our checkbook balance start to decrease more rapidly than what makes me comfortable.

I'm wondering how one qualifies for food stamps and WIC, if it comes to that. I know that you have to have a certain income level, according to the info I read online about food stamps, but what about temporary situations like job losses and maternity? I don't hope to be unemployed for too long, (and still hope my book sells hope hope hope) but if financially we're not going to make it, then can food stamps or WIC help us out?

02-23-2009, 07:33 PM
I got WIC with both of my children. It's nothing to be ashamed of. Don't let the hard-ass ,pull yourself up by your bootstraps people make you feel guilty for getting assistance that you need.

If it's there and you qualify, you should take advantage of it as long as you think you need it. Might as well get something back for your tax dollars.

These programs are based on family size, assets, and income mostly. Best bet is for you to go to your local DHHR (Department of Health and Human Resources) and make application for these programs. You won't know if you qualify until you apply, so just go apply and see where you stand.

02-23-2009, 08:05 PM
You paid taxes that go into those funds for when you need them and now you need them. WIC will be easier to get. I got food stamps back in the early 90's for a month and I was told that I had to have nothing to live on in order to get them. But that may have changed. If you have money in the bank they may want you to deplete it before you apply. Don't expect them to make any sense, they don't care. I never dealt with them since. Whenever I've needed food I've always went to the churches. You don't need to be completely broke to get food.

Good luck and keep looking forward. (((HUG)))

02-23-2009, 08:14 PM
Encourage her to breast feed even during the painful times. The pain won't last long.

02-23-2009, 08:18 PM
I had WIC...

It's financially based on income vs. family size.. you could possibly get it even right now and not wait til the baby is born.. they only give you things like cereal, milk, cheese, peanut butter, juice that sort of stuff.. they give it to pregnant women to make sure they're getting the nutrients they need and then they help with formula (although they hope you breastfeed), baby cereal, milk and other things for the baby and for the moms.. it's a great program and I can't say enough about it... they also are a resource when it comes to lactation counseling.

Wayne K
02-23-2009, 08:20 PM
Absolutly nothing to be embarrassed about with food stamps and WIC. If you're hungry you eat, you're part of the herd and no matter how you got to that point, that's what food stamps are there for.
With both of these things I say go right away because I've been reading a lot about the amount of people signing up.
My grandfather, according to legend, let his family starve before he accepted welfare. I admire his conviction, but I question the intelligence of the whole thing.

02-23-2009, 08:29 PM
You should have gone to the health dept as soon as she became a prego. They would have given you vouchers for milk and cheese and things that she needs. As soon as you read this rush her over as soon as you can so you can start getting those into her body. She also needs folic acid. As soon as the baby is born run back to the health dept to get the formula vouchers.
Food stamps are another story. I'm in Kentucky where pretty much everyone locally is on food stamps and the state medical card. We came here to start a family and I'm from Maryland. I got tired of living in a state where everyone just drains it. (people do what they can to get state aid rather then earn money, at least in this area) That and I wanted a better living area to raise my child. Maryland gave us the complete runaround rather then giving us state medical and foodstamps. They would loose documents, move appointments without telling us, change our case worker without telling us... everything. Later I found out it was because we came up from Kentucky and viewed as pretty much worthless. So go to your local apartment of social services and if they give you the runaround stay ontop of them and visit them everyday until they get their act together. We were in Maryland for two months and couldn't get any support the only thing we had was his mother's roof over our head and I lost my son to her (grandmas living with babies... never a good thing for motherhood) so we ended up falling back to kentucky and back to where we started, no good life and a place with no future. It's been six months now and I finally got a rejection letter that our case was declined over missing documents that we turned in three times.... good luck!

02-23-2009, 08:32 PM
I encourage you to go ahead and make an appointment with your Dept of Human Services. (Might be called something else in your state.) I had a really good experience with my county DHS office, found them to be really caring and helpful. I live in a small county, though, so maybe they weren't as busy as the larger county offices. I had WIC with two of my three children, but in OK that is handled at the state health department rather than DHS. Both of those offices can tell you what resources are available to you, and you can choose which to use. If affording healthcare for your wife's pregnancy is an issue, they may have assistance for that, as well.

Good luck. :)

02-23-2009, 09:26 PM
Another suggestion, planned parenthood?

02-23-2009, 11:12 PM
WIC is a food supplement program for pregnant and nursing mothers with certain income qualifications. sometimes the program is extended until a child's fifth birthday, depending on the situation. the income limits are fairly reasonable, I would expect one on unemployment might qualify. I qualified while on maternity leave and even after returning to work part time.
they will give you vouchers for milk, eggs, cheese, cereal, beans, etc. using the vouchers is a bit of a pain, unless they've changed the program. each voucher is very specific and has to be rang up individually at the register. so while you may only have 8-10 items up, it could take a while, as they would ring 8 separate transactions.
when I was on the program, I had to pick the vouchers up in person, and my eligible child had to have a height/weight check every other visit, as this is designed as a nutritional program.

food stamps is much more stringent and the office over-worked and understaffed. the one time I needed them, it took over two months just to get an appointment, and mine was a hardship case. then I had to sit in the office most of the morning, moving from one long line to another. they will assess all of your monetary assetts, including bank statements and car payments. well worth it if there is a strong need. I only used mine for a month, because my income level changed, and while I still would have qualified with reduced benefits,, I just felt there were those much needier and gave up my spot in line for them.