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NC reinstates WIC program after securing funds

By Juliana Valencia
Published On: Oct 11 2013 10:54:10 PM CDT

The WIC program is running again after the government shutdown caused health departments to stop giving out vouchers. NewsChannel12 spent the afternoon with a local mother who relies on WIC.

NEWPORT, CARTERET COUNTY -

The WIC program is running again after the government shutdown caused health departments to stop giving out vouchers. WIC -- short for women infants and children -- helps low income mothers buy baby formula and food.

NewsChannel12 spent the afternoon with a local mother, Kelly King, who relies on WIC. She has been using the WIC program ever since her 18 month old daughter Tatianna was born.

"When you're a first time mom you don't want to leave your child at home, but you have to go to work. You need help buying formula when they're little because getting minimum wage doesn't help buy formula," King said.

Mother’s using WIC have scheduled appointments every three months to pick up their vouchers. King had her WIC appointment during the two days the program was shutdown.

“They said I could come, but I wouldn't get WIC vouchers. I decided not to go," King said.

Pamlico County Health Department Director, Dennis Harrington said in the two days the program was shutdown he had a waiting list of more than 50 people. Harrington said offices were able to offer vouchers again Friday.

"They found some carry forward funds that were able to be used to open the program back up, but it truly is going to be on a week by week basis," Mitchell said.

North Carolina Department of Health offices are currently offering WIC services until October 31.  The WIC program helps more than 250,000 women feed their families every month in North Carolina.