WIC, Shame and Adopting from Foster Care

Free cheese and juice, please!

At last week’s adoption class we found out that kids that are in foster care are eligible for the WIC program in California. I’m not sure whether I want to take advantage of it though.

I have worked hard as an adult to make sure that I don’t need to rely on public assistance. I grew up with folks being on public assistance in my neighborhoods and I decided that I did not want to live like that.

I’m not sure how to feel about the WIC program. I’m glad that the kids have access to it, but I’m not sure if I want to use it ….

Ugh ….



8 thoughts on “WIC, Shame and Adopting from Foster Care

  1. I definitely will be using it for our foster child(ren), but I understand how you feel. I do kind of worry about being judged by people at the grocery store. But the assistance isn’t for me or you, it’s for the child. I think it would be soooo helpful financially for foster parents who need formula.

    • I can’t lie. I’m a fiscal conservative and so using WIC and other “free” services provided by the government make me super uncomfortable. I guess part of it will depend on the age of the child we get. Formula is expensive.

      • Let me blow your mind a little — foster care is a kind of free service provided by the govt. 😉 The govt is spending (a lot of) money to raise a child that is in an unsafe home. WIC is one of the ways the govt pays for this child (though is probably the smallest expense compared to the costs of the legal system, social workers, and even foster parent stipend).

  2. I agree. For the formula it is totally worth it. If it was your biological child, you have the option of breastfeeding. A foster kid, you don’t. How do you feel about taking the child tax credit? We had kids for 2 years but only 2 months at a time so we could not claim them on our taxes. The WIC isn’t much, but it helps a little. Plus we don’t get reimbursed for mileage (and visits 4x a week) so I have no problems with taking WIC.

    • That’s something else that I’m worried about: the visits. I think it’s cool for a kid to be able to visit their family. I don’t think it’s cool that we’ll be expected to drive them back and forth several times a week to those visits.

      Sometimes the expectations seem a bit ridiculous. We do have to work to bring in money to feed/clothe/house the kids in the first place. =(

  3. We chose not to use it with our foster children. The main reason being it was such a big pain to sign up for it (a long class to take and more paperwork than I could have imagined). Most of the foster parents I know do use it.

    • That didn’t even occur to me. You have to take a class and fill out paperwork? I guess I thought that it would be taken care of by the foster care people. Ugh! Now … I’m definitely leaning toward “no”.

      • The “class” is about 1-2 hours. But yes, there is a lot of paperwork to fill out. The average WIC benefit in CA is $64 per month. I don’t know if it would even be worth it.
        Of course, I think the kids could “come with” WIC – as in, the county applies for it for them and makes sure that the proper adult uses it, depending on who the kids are with at any given time.

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