WIC office to open in Demopolis Wednesday

Published 1:10 am Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Marengo County Health Department will open a satellite WIC (women, infants and children) clinic in Demopolis Wednesday. The office, which will be open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each Wednesday, is the first permanent WIC clinic in Demopolis in more than 20 years.

“We’ve been working on it for several months,” Denise Pope, M.S.R.D., Nutrition Director for Public Health Area Seven said of the facility, which is housed in the former Demopolis municipal court building.

The decision to open the office came after Pope and her colleagues analyzed the WIC program’s case load in Marengo County and determined the move to be beneficial to WIC participants.

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“We have approximately 900 participants in the WIC program in Marengo County,” Pope said. “Of that 900, about 400 have Demopolis phone numbers and addresses. This helps them to not have to find a ride to Linden because a lot of our participants have transportation issues.”

WIC is an income-based supplemental nutritional program for women, infants and children aged five and younger. It allows limited income families to provide healthy dietary options to young children by providing specific food vouchers.

“The USDA did surveys and found the nutrients that were lacking in the diets of limited income families,” Pope said of the program’s inception in the 1970s. “There have been tons of studies done that show the effectiveness of the program.”

Pope said she anticipates the establishment of a Demopolis office, which was made possible due in part to the contributions and assistance of the city of Demopolis, will also expand the client base in the city as assistance will be more easily accessible.

The office is located on Walnut Ave. in front of the Christmas on the River warehouse just across from the Shell Station. Individuals seeking WIC assistance must set up appointments through the Marengo County Health Department by calling 295-4205. More information on the WIC program is available at www.adph.org/wic.