Explaining WIC and SNAP benefits

Dresden Shumaker, Single Mom & Blogger, explains the WIC and SNAP benefits, who they are for, and how they can help those in need
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Explaining WIC and SNAP benefits

I think a lot of the acronyms used in public assistance can be kind of confusing or overwhelming. Actually, if you go to the grocery store right now, you've seen these acronyms already on the shelf. Maybe you've noticed that a favorite cereal has WIC next to a price, and not really noticed what that meant. It actually stands for Women Infant and Children which is a program that's different from the food stamp or SNAP benefit program. Basically, any woman who is pregnant or has an infant is illegible for WIC or wic as they call it. It's a fantastic program that they have in all States. It's incredibly simple to apply. It comes with training for, you know, if moms want to learn how to nurse, or get support in nursing, if they need just general parenting advice. Or connections. It's a good place to go. What they do that's different from SNAP is they will actually give you a voucher which looks like a coupon but what it does is you can exchange it for things like gallons of milk or apple juice, fresh fruit. There are actually some states like Vermont that are connected to local farms, and you can get to local produce with your WIC stamps. So, actually they are WIC coupons, or vouchers. And SNAP is the new name for Food Stamps. It changed in 2008 because, as we all know, there is a stigma with the term Food Stamps. People don't have a very positive connotation with that phrase. So they changed it to SNAP, because it's got a little more edge to it, a little more pop. Adn it stands for Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program. And when you qualify for SNAP and you start receiving benefits, you will receive something called an EBT card, which stands for Electronic Benefit Transfer. And what this means is that it's simply like any other bank transaction that you would make. Whe you go to the market, you swipe a debit or credit card, or if you have an EBT card, you swipe that. And it electronically transfers the benefit out of your account.

Dresden Shumaker, Single Mom & Blogger, explains the WIC and SNAP benefits, who they are for, and how they can help those in need


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Dresden Shumaker

Single Mom & Blogger

Dresden Shumaker blogs at Creating Motherhood, a site she created in 2005 to chronicle her path to single parenthood. She was honored as a BlogHer "Voices of the Year" keynote speaker in 2012. A former Hollywood insider, Dresden now spends her days working in PR and new media for a Philly tech startup and her evenings negotiating with her three year old son about the number of toys he may bring into the bathtub. Dresden is a single mom and lives in a multigenerational home in Philadelphia.  

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