We received notice from the United States Department of Agriculture that the state plans for both the Arizona WIC Program and the Arizona Nutrition Network were approved for federal fiscal Year 2016. While USDA has not yet finalized the budget for the coming year, the Arizona WIC Program was funded for more than $130 million in federal fiscal Year 2015. The Arizona Nutrition Network’s budget for federal fiscal Year 2016 is $13.1 million, with nearly three quarters of the funds being distributed to local programs to provide services.

WIC is a free nutrition and breastfeeding program that provides personalized nutrition tips and support for parents and caregivers; breastfeeding information, support and resources; and healthy foods to more than 150,000 participants every month. Take a look at the goals and objectives that were included in the WIC State Plan, as they are key to our efforts to decrease overweight and obesity throughout Arizona. Obesity is one of our leading issues for the Arizona State Health Improvement Plan.

The Arizona Nutrition Network focuses on promoting healthy eating habits and physically active lifestyles for people eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The Network provides comprehensive, evidence-based nutrition education in communities and also uses public health approaches to prevent obesity.

Special thanks to the staff in the Bureau of Nutrition and Physical Activity who worked hard to complete these detailed plans for providing valuable public health nutrition services to low income families in Arizona.