WIC Grants To States (WGS)

 

To provide grants to WIC State agencies to plan, design and implement WIC electronic benefit transfer (EBT) systems so that Program benefits can be provided electronically and/or to transfer modern/viable management information systems (MIS). Sufficient funding was provided in FY2016 to support the 2010 HHFKA, and the WIC EBT Mandate. Please note the following grant activities: 1. WIC EBT Implementation (non-competitive). Grant funds for WIC EBT projects are provided to WIC State agencies to support EBT planning or implementation projects. These projects were originally funded through a competitive process using WIC technology or American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds. 2. WIC State Agency Model (SAM) Amendments (non-competitive). Grant funds for WIC SAM amendments are provided to support WIC State agencies that are either part of the original SAM consortia, or those that need additional funding to complete implementation of a SAM transfer system. 3. WIC EBT Planning Grants (non-competitive). EBT Planning grant funds are provided to WIC State agencies to assess the feasibility of EBT for their State, as well as to perform a cost analysis to verify EBT affordability. The planning process is a WIC requirement prior to EBT implementation and examines WIC MIS capabilities, retailer capabilities, and baseline paper cost compared to EBT operational cost within the State to better prepare for the challenges of EBT implementation. WIC State agencies must analyze both on-line and off-line EBT technologies to assess the most cost-effective solution. 4. WIC Technical Innovation Grants (competitive). WIC Technical Innovation grant funds are provided to WIC State agencies for the development of standardized reporting, retailer certification test scripts, and development of a web-based Internet system that will allow WIC participants to access grocer's websites, select their authorized supplemental foods and purchase them with their EBT cards from the convenience of their homes. 5. WIC SAM Transfers Grants (non-competitive). SAM Transfer grant funds are provided to WIC State agencies that have completed their planning activities and have an approved Alternatives Analysis document that justifies a SAM as their choice of system transfer. Funds are used for implementation activities. 6. WIC MIS Implementation (non-competitive). WIC MIS Implementation grant funds are provided to WIC State agencies that are implementing a new MIS or that are upgrading or enhancing their current MIS. Activities included are design and development, testing, training, and data conversion. 7. WIC MIS Planning (non-competitive). WIC MIS Planning grant funds are provided to WIC State agencies to assess their current systems, complete a feasibility study and cost analysis, as well as prepare a Request for Proposal for an implementation contractor. 8. WIC SAM Product Management Office (PMO) (non-competitive). WIC SAM PMO grant funds are provided to WIC State agencies responsible for the support and management of the SAM change control process, including prioritization of enhancements, User Group Governance, and maintenance and operation of the State agency MIS Core Code. To provide grants to WIC State agencies that improve and/or enhance services of the WIC Program. WIC awards State agencies the following grants: 1. WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counseling Funds (discretionary). WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counseling Funds are intended to enable State agencies to implement or maintain effective breastfeeding peer counselor programs. Combining peer counseling with the on-going breastfeeding promotion and support efforts in WIC agencies has the potential to significantly impact breastfeeding rates among WIC participants. The Food and Nutrition Service?s long-range vision is to institutionalize peer counseling as a core service in WIC. A portion of these funds may be used to award breastfeeding performance bonuses. These incentives build upon WIC?s longstanding efforts to promote and support breastfeeding, and are intended to recognize and award State agencies that have demonstrated successful breastfeeding promotion and support efforts. 2. WIC Infrastructure Grants (discretionary). Section 17(h)(10)(III) of the Child Nutrition Act of 1966, as amended, authorizes funding for WIC special projects, which are intended to improve the delivery of WIC program services and that demonstrate national or regional significance. a) The WIC Special Project Innovation Grant (WSPI), formerly known as the WIC Special Project Grants, as awarded, will establish an academic and/or non-profit organization to award sub-grants to WIC State and local agencies as they develop, implement, and evaluate new or innovative projects to meet the changing needs of WIC participants. The guiding principles of the sub-grants are: build on and improve FNS? understanding of the diverse personal experiences, perceptions, and attitudes of those eligible for WIC services; and allow the Program to refine and enhance service delivery and customer service based on the understanding of the participant experience. b) To provide a continuing education/technical assistance program focusing on the improvement of maternal and infant health through the delivery of risk-appropriate high-quality nutrition services through the Maternal Nutrition Intensive Course. This course is currently administered by the University of Minnesota and is designed for WIC staff, dietitians, nutritionists, certified nurse midwives, registered nurses and nurse practitioners, physicians and public health professionals who serve preconceptual, pregnant, post-partum and breastfeeding women. c) To support local effort to develop interactive tools, technical resources and innovative solutions that will improve customer service in WIC clinics through the Johns Hopkins University (JHU) Participant Research Innovation Laboratory for Enhancing WIC Services. JHU will select up to five WIC local agencies as sub-grantees for this research through national competition. d) WIC disaster infrastructure grant funds to assist Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands in the repair and restoration of buildings, equipment, technology, and other infrastructure damaged as a consequence of Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Active
Program Number
10.578
Federal Agency/Office
Food and Nutrition Service, Department of Agriculture
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
B - Project Grants
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2016 No Current Data Available. 84 Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grants, 8 Breastfeeding Performance Bonus awards were awarded; Special Project Infrastructure Grants: 4 full grants and 2 mini-grants focusing on Child Retention were awarded; University of Minnesota was awarded a cooperative agreement to administer the Maternal Nutrition Intensive Course. University of Minnesota Maternal Intensive Course was held July 27-29, 2016
Fiscal Year 2017 79 Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grants, 6 Breastfeeding Performance Bonus awards were awarded; Special Project Infrastructure Grants: 2 full grants and 2 mini-grants focusing on improving the delivery of WIC services were awarded. University of Minnesota was awarded a cooperative agreement to administer the Maternal Nutrition Intensive Course. University of Minnesota Maternal Intensive Course was held July 16-18, 2017.
Fiscal Year 2018 72 Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grants totaling $59,900,000 were awarded. Grants ranged from $18,000 to $ 8,373,735. The remaining $100,000 in Breastfeeding Peer Counseling funds were awarded as Breastfeeding Performance Bonus awards to 2 large (>1000 participants) and 12 small (<1000 participants) State agencies shown to have greatest percentage increase of the number of fully breastfed infants than in the previous fiscal year. Awards ranged from $500 to $57,098. 17 General Infrastructure grants totaling over $7,000,000.
Fiscal Year 2019 50 WIC State agencies, delivering benefits to over 60% of participants, have successfully implemented EBT projects Statewide; 20 State agencies are currently in the planning phase for EBT; 20 WIC State agencies are currently in the implementing phase for EBT.
Fiscal Year 2020 No current data available.
Authorization
The Child nutrition Act (CNA), Title 7, Part 246, Public Law 111-296, 42 U.S.C. 1786
Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
State agencies that administer the WIC Program are eligible to apply for WIC Grant to States funds. States may apply individually or as a coalition of States for WIC technology funds. States may apply individually for WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counseling and Infrastructure grants. Disaster infrastructure grants are available to the Puerto Rico WIC and the U.S. Virgin Islands WIC to assist in the repair and restoration of buildings, equipment, technology, and other infrastructure damaged as a consequence of Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
Beneficiary Eligibility
WIC participants will be the ultimate beneficiary in that improved technology will allow for more efficient and effective clinic operations. Additionally, the WIC Program is moving towards the issuance of benefits through electronic benefit transfer. This will enhance their shopping experience and allow for greater flexibility in benefit delivery. Pregnant and breastfeeding women participating in the WIC Program are encouraged to initiate and sustain breastfeeding by peer counselors funded by Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grants. Program improvements resulting from Infrastructure Grants benefit all WIC participants. Disaster Infrastructure Grants will allow Puerto Rico WIC and Virgin Islands WIC to repair and restore buildings, equipment, technology, and other infrastructure damaged as a consequence of Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
Credentials/Documentation
Only WIC State agencies that administer the WIC Program are eligible. Applicants must submit proper documentation through the FNS funding process to ensure adequate resources are available for project success. Applicants are required to submit a description of the technology/ special Sate project, staffing and budget documents, feasibility studies, cost allocation plans, and any other required documents. A properly executed Federal/State agreement between FNS and the State agency is necessary before funds can be allocated. For WIC Disaster Infrastructure Grants, State agencies must specify proposed plans for the use of grant funds, and ensure each proposed grant activity is within statutory scope, reasonable, necessary, and allocable, and has clear timelines for completion within the period available for grantee expenditure.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is required. Applicants must submit technology grants requests using the FNS WIC MIS and/or EBT funding process, which relies on an approved APD as a pre-requisite step. Prior to receiving WIC Disaster Infrastructure Grants, applicable State agencies must submit a needs assessment to determine State Agency restoration and repair needs. To receive funding, the identified needs must be within statutory scope, reasonable, necessary, and allocable.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Special Project grants are competitive grants. Applications are submitted via Grants.gov. Applicants must submit proper documentation to FNS for approval before the project begins. There is no application process for Breastfeeding Peer Counseling Grants. To receive funding, State agencies must submit documentation requesting or declining funds. For the WIC Disaster Infrastructure Grants, State agencies must submit a needs assessment for approval based on statutory scope, and whether the iterated item is reasonable, necessary, and allocable.
Award Procedure
FNS will review all documentation within 90 days of receipt to determine if the project meets all requirements. Continued funding will be provided if the WIC State agency meets all requirements and if funding is available. WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grants are provided to State agencies administering the WIC Program based on an FNS approved plan and the number of pregnant and breastfeeding women participating in the program. Breastfeeding performance bonuses are funded with Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grants. Bonus awards are based upon State agencies that have the highest percentage of fully breastfed infants and/or those that have the greatest improvement of the percentage of fully breastfed infants over the last fiscal year. WIC Disaster Infrastructure Grants will be awarded once proposed projects have been approved based on statutory scope, and deemed necessary, reasonable, and allocable.
Deadlines
Contact the headquarters or regional location, as appropriate for application deadlines
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
About 3 to 6 months for technology grants. Approval determination for Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grant is made within 30 days of submission of a completed plan or amendment. Approval determination for the Infrastructure grants is made approximately 90 days from date of submission. None for WIC Disaster Infrastructure Grants.
Appeals
Not applicable.
Renewals
Not applicable.
How are proposals selected?
State agencies will use the APD process for project approval and request funding using MIS and EBT funding request protocol. State agencies will submit a needs assessment form outlining the type of needs, the year of obligation, estimated cost, need reason and timeframe of completion.
How may assistance be used?
Technology grant funds are used to plan, develop and implement projects for WIC MIS and EBT. Grant funds are used to enhance and improve WIC service provision through the use of technology which will have a positive impact on the nutrition and health of WIC participants. WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grants are used to administer peer counseling programs based on research-based components of a successful peer counseling program as identified by FNS in the WIC Breastfeeding Support (formerly Loving Support) model. This includes salary, office space and supervision of peer counselors. The use of funds for activities outside of the State agency's approved implementation plan or that are not supported by the WIC Breastfeeding Support model are not authorized. WIC Infrastructure Grants are used to plan, develop and implement approved special State projects of regional or national significance to improve the program services. The use of Special Project Grant funds is limited to the State agency's FNS approved budget for the project. WIC Disaster Infrastructure Grants are designated to repair and restore, buildings, equipment, technology and other infrastructure damaged due to the impact of Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Reporting
Not applicable.
Auditing
Not applicable.
Records
State agencies must maintain records as necessary to support the use of all grants to States funds in accordance with the Cooperative Agreement. Such records must be retained for a period of 3 years after the date of submission of the final report for the fiscal year to which the records pertain, except that if audit findings have not been resolved, the records shall be retained beyond the three year period as long as required for the resolution of the issues raised by the audit.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formula is not applicable to this assistance listing.

Matching requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.

MOE requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Technology grant funds are available from 2-5 years, depending on project timeline. Obligations must occur within the specified award period. The WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counseling funds are 2 year funds. WIC Infrastructure Grant funds are 2 year funds Disaster Infrastructure Grants are available until September 30, 2019 and must be expended within 24 months following the agency's obligation of those funds. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: Letter.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
FNS Regional Offices https://www.fns.usda.gov/fns-regional-offices
Headquarters Office
Sarah Widor, Director, Supplemental Food Programs Division
5th Floor
3101 Park Center Drive
Alexandria, VA 22302 US
Sarah.Widor@fns.usda.gov
Phone: (703) 305-2746
Website Address
http://www.fns.usda.gov/wic/women-infants-and-children-wic
Financial Information
Account Identification
12-3510-0-1-605
Obligations
(Project Grants (Discretionary)) FY 18$60,000,000.00; FY 19 est $60,000,000.00; FY 20 est $60,000,000.00; FY 17$60,000,000.00; FY 16$60,000,000.00; - Breastfeeding Peer Counseling funds are awarded to States under this grant. In FY 2018, States/ITOs received $59,900,000 in Breastfeeding Peer Counseling grants and $100,000 in Breastfeeding Bonus Awards.(Cooperative Agreements) FY 18$35,700.00; FY 19 Estimate Not Available FY 20 FY 17$35,700.00; FY 16$35,700.00; - Maternal Nutrition Intensive Course is awarded under this grant. (Project Grants (Discretionary)) FY 18$13,600,000.00; FY 19 est $13,600,000.00; FY 20 est $13,600,000.00; FY 17$13,600,000.00; FY 16$13,600,000.00; - Infrastructure are awarded under this grant.(Project Grants (Discretionary)) FY 18$14,000,000.00; FY 19 Estimate Not Available FY 20 Estimate Not Available FY 17$0.00; - WIC Disaster Infrastructure Grants are granted under these funds.(Cooperative Agreements) FY 18$2,000,000.00; FY 19 Estimate Not Available FY 20 Estimate Not Available - Participant Research Innovation Laboratory for Enhancing WIC Services is funded under this grant.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Awards ranged from $1,217 to $60,195. 18 General Infrastructure grants ranging from $18,000 to $750,000 and four Special Project Grants focusing on improving the delivery of WIC services; the grant amounts totaled $1,128,749
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
7 CFR Part 3016, 7 CFR Part 3017, 7 CFR Part 3018.
Examples of Funded Projects
Not applicable.

 



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