About WIC Grocery
WIC Grocery is Chicagoland’s one stop shop for healthy and nutritious WIC-approved goods.
Recently redesigned, each of WIC Grocery’s 16 locations offers a wide variety of name-brand, nutritious and 100% WIC-approved foods. Starting in 2020, all WIC Grocery locations began accepting the Illinois WIC EBT card to ensure easy and convenient benefit redemption.
All WIC Grocery locations are operated by Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago’s comprehensive networks of Community Development and Outreach Services extend charity, providing compassionate, competent, and professional services that strengthen and support our local communities. We assist individuals, families, and communities by providing supportive services that enhance growth and development in the areas of community nutrition programs, youth development, employment and training, health promotion, community educational intervention and outreach initiatives, and social enterprises.
History of WIC Grocery
Since 1917, Catholic Charities has supported all who turn to us for help through services touching almost every human service need. Our services began first to assist veterans, women and children.
In 1993 WIC Grocery Centers were conceived as a solution to several systematic problems in Chicago, including lack of adequate neighborhood grocery stores, major food chains refusing to risk locating in economically deteriorating areas, and abuse and fraud of WIC coupons which made it unsafe for clients to shop and legally costly to resolve. The WIC Grocery Centers played an important role in the revitalization of communities and neighborhoods within the City of Chicago.
Today, WIC Food and Nutrition Centers continue to provide high quality supplemental foods and services to participants in an atmosphere that represents accessibility and comfort. Conveniently located, WIC Food Centers serve as unique hubs for participants in underserved communities, providing access to social services, employment and job training, nutrition education, and other programs and resources to support families.
Since 1974, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) has provided healthy food, quality nutrition services, breastfeeding support, health screenings, and healthcare and social services referrals for millions of expectant and new parents, babies, and young children. Administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), WIC’s targeted, time-limited services are demonstrated to improve birth outcomes and support positive child growth and development, helping to grow a healthier next generation.
WIC stands at the intersection of food security and public health. First established to address the pernicious effects of early childhood malnutrition, WIC is distinguished from other federal nutrition programs through its integrated public health services and health screenings. These complementary supports are critical in achieving the improved health outcomes that set up WIC babies and young children for future life success. Since passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which reoriented the healthcare system toward preventive services, WIC’s successful nutrition intervention and established rapport with families have been increasingly leveraged to address systemic national health concerns, including childhood obesity, diabetes prevention, maternal and infant mortality, opioid and substance use, and lead exposure.