Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program
COVID-19 FARMER’S MARKET UPDATE
Cascade County WIC at CCHD is still distributing Farmer’s Market Benefits this year. We do not know if the Farmer’s Market in Great Falls will open or not. However, there are several options to use your benefits.
If you have received your WIC Farmer’s Market Benefits in the mail, please call 406-454-6953 and leave a message letting us know you have received them.
If the Great Falls Farmer’s Market opens, you can use your benefits there.
There are farmer’s markets open in other parts of Montana. You can use your benefits anywhere in Montana, at any vendor that takes the farmer’s market benefits. These vendors display the “WIC Benefits Accepted” signs.
If you see a Hutterite farmer set up, stop and check with them. They are probably a WIC vendor and can accept the farmer’s market benefits. Here are the days/times/locations of some farm stands around Great Falls:
- Camrose Colony will be at the corner of 3rd Ave NW and Central Ave West in the parking lot near US Bank & the federal courthouse (Saturdays 7:30 AM to 2 PM)
- Pleasant Valley will be set up at Cattleman’s Cut, 1400 Market Place Drive (Saturdays 8:30 AM to 2 PM)
- Rockport Colony will be set up on Wednesdays in the Exchange parking lot at Malmstrom (Wednesdays 8 AM to 1 PM) and then in the Do Bar parking lot (Wednesdays 4 PM to 7 PM)
- New Miami Colony, Birch Creek Colony, and Grassland Colony will be downtown at the corner of 4th and Central, by the Pizzazz Corner Market (SATURDAYS 8AM to 12PM)
- Miller Colony will be out in the Choteau area (Seeley Lake, Stevensville, Fairfield, Augusta). You can call John for locations and times at 406-466-2421 X 710
FAMILY HEALTH SERVICES MESSAGE:
Due to COVID-19 the following precautionary measures are being taken to prevent unnecessary exposure for staff and families we serve:
- WIC: All WIC offices are closing to the public. If you currently have an appointment scheduled, the WIC clinic staff will be contacting you to complete it over the phone. You will continue to receive and be able to use your benefits as long as your certification is active. Contact your local WIC clinic for remote service, or call the State Office at 1-800-433-4298 for assistance. The State Office will also be available by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Home Visiting (Parents as Teachers, First Year Initiative, SafeCare, Montana Asthma Program): Home visiting staff will be doing all home visits by phone or video conferencing depending on the guidance of each program. Home visitors will contact current and newly referred clients individually to schedule remote appointment times. It is our goal to continue to provide as many of our families as possible with the resources they need, so please call us at 406-454-6950 with questions or concerns.
- Car Seat Program: We will not provide car seats or car seat checkups until further notice.
- Parenting Classes: All parenting classes have been temporarily cancelled. Current participants will be notified once classes resume.
- CONNECT Referral System: Onboarding will continue; however, in-person training and meetings are cancelled. Trainings will take place remotely.
- Foster Child Health Program: Nurses will not provide in-person visits to foster parents, but will remain in contact as necessary.
Please call us at 406-454-6950 with questions or concerns.
Update: as of Weds, 7/17/19, our WIC office has distributed all of its 2019 farmer’s market vouchers. Thank you for participating and for spreading the word!
If you have received farmer’s market benefits, please return your completed cards to the WIC office by Thurs, 10/24/19.
The Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program provides vouchers that can be used to buy fresh, unprepared fruits and vegetables from State-approved farmers’ markets. Women and children that have been certified to receive WIC services or who are on a waiting list for WIC certification are eligible to participate.
The Farm Direct Program, begun in 2010, combines the WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program with the WIC program in a way that authorizes individual farmers to accept both WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program Benefits (FMNP) and WIC Fruit & Vegetable Benefits (FVB). Authorized farmers may sell their Farm Direct eligible produce in a Farmers’ Market, at a roadside stand, from the back of a truck, at their farm, or “u-pick” style.
Farm Direct provides WIC families with the opportunity to purchase fresh, locally-grown fruits and vegetables directly from authorized Montana farmers. By using their Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program Benefits, WIC participants will have a wonderful array of locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables to choose from to feed their families, which my help reduce some of the barriers to a healthy diet that many low income families experience.
Participating in the Farm Direct Program provides farmers with additional sales opportunities, promotes the production of locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables, and helps support the local economy.
Contact your local WIC clinic for information on when FMNP Benefits will be made available or to find out how to become an authorized farmer.
For more information on the Farm Direct Program, including a Farm Direct Eligible Food List, go to http://dphhs.mt.gov/publichealth/WIC/FarmDirect.aspx.