National WIC Association

February 27, 2024

National WIC Association Commits to Supporting White House Challenge to End Hunger and Build Healthy Communities

The following is a statement from Georgia Machell, interim president and CEO of the National WIC Association, on its commitment in support of achieving the goals of the National Strategy on Hunger, Nutrition and Health.

“We are confident that America can end hunger and reduce diet-related diseases by 2030 and the National WIC Association is pleased to do our part to help achieve those goals. For fifty years, WIC has provided critical health and nutrition support to women, infants, and young children — reducing hunger and poverty, providing pregnancy and breastfeeding support, and helping more than half of babies born in the United States have a healthy start in life.

Each pillar of NWA’s commitment is designed to strengthen WIC for generations to come:

Ensuring WIC agencies reflect the communities they serve. The strength of WIC depends on the strength of its workforce. NWA will invest $350,000 in WIC agencies to support WIC staff from underserved and underrepresented communities — such as Black, Indigenous, Latino, and Asian communities — to pursue nutrition and lactation credentials, while helping more than 200 WIC staff complete and earning a WIC Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging certificate.

Making WIC more accessible: Currently, WIC serves only about half of eligible participants. NWA will provide additional resources to our WIC agency members to help them reach more families in their communities who are eligible to participate and enhance retention of current members. In particular, we will completely redesign and make technical upgrades to the national site to make it easier for families to find their local WIC agency and begin the enrollment process.

Promoting WIC as the premier ‘Food as Medicine program.’ No program is as successful as WIC at combining health and nutrition services — such as health screenings, nutrition and breastfeeding education and counseling, immunization screening, referrals to health and social services and healthy food prescriptions — to help participants across the age spectrum. Leveraging WIC’s 50th anniversary in 2024, NWA will engage in promotion and storytelling campaigns to lift up WIC’s effectiveness and accessibility by engaging state and local WIC agencies, healthcare providers, and community-based organizations through direct-to-participant communications channels.

As we celebrate the announcement of these and other private sector commitments, we urge the public sector to also do its part. Congress must immediately come together and do what it has done for decades: ensure WIC has enough funding to meet the needs of all current and prospective participants.  A healthy, thriving WIC is essential to ending hunger and reducing diet-related disease, and that starts with Congress meeting its commitments to the families who rely on it.”

Read NWA’s full commitment here.