Over the last 25 years, the Boulder County Farmers Markets have supported Boulder County WIC (Women, Infants and Children Program) families by providing a donation of approximately $5,000 annually in the form of free WIC vouchers. These vouchers have allowed WIC families to purchase fresh fruits, vegetables, eggs, cheese and meat at the farmers market. This year, BCFM partnered with Boulder County Public Health to enhance the Farmers Market WIC program. The program now allows WIC families to receive $20 inFarmers Market vouchers each time they visit the market, rather than just one time per season. Not only does this money help address health equity issues in Boulder County, it also directly supports our local farmers.
Now, persons with an eWIC card are able to receive $20 in Farmers Market vouchers each time they visit the market. This program provides weekly WIC vouchers to Longmont WIC families at the Longmont farmers market to spend on healthy, WIC eligible foods.
Thus far in 2018, the WIC program has served 75 unique families, including 153 children and 3 unborn babies, for a total of 319 Longmont residents. Many of the participating families have utilized the program multiple times, indicating that they are developing new shopping patterns and establishing new weekly habits. A total of 215 transactions have occurred since the beginning of April, and BCFM has already distributed $4,300 of the $5,000 total donation from the Boulder County Farmers Market Association. The program continues to grow each week and has reached more Longmont WIC families than any year to date.
Factoring in program growth, BCPH and BCFM predict that an additional $18,400 will be required to offer this program through the end of the season. BCFM will host 23 additional markets through the end of November and with the Lafayette Farmers Market starting there are even more opportunities to grow this program. The Lafayette Farmers Market will need to raise $4,800 in order to keep this program going through the 16 remaining markets. 100% of this funding will go directly to healthy food incentives for low-income Longmont/Lafayette families and their children.
There are 1860 individuals living in Longmont who are enrolled in the Women Infants and Children (WIC) nutrition assistance program. 500 individuals living in Lafayette participate in this program. Seventy-seven percent of the people enrolled in WIC in Boulder County are children ages 0-5. Individuals enrolled in WIC are at or below 185% of the federal poverty level.
One quarter of Boulder County WIC recipients are Spanish speaking residents. While WIC benefits provide food dollars for families to increase their ability to purchase healthy foods, some WIC recipients receive as little as $8 a month to purchase fruits and vegetables.
There are many ways you can help!
Make an individual donation towards this program.