State draws attention to various programs to help children

TRENTON – Various state departments have sent out fliers to schools, municipalities and social service organizations to get parents with low or middle incomes to sign up their children for various state or federally funded programs providing assistance for food, child care and other services.

The programs, administered by the Departments of Health and Senior Services, Agriculture and Human Services, include NJ FamilyCare, NJ SNAP, Women, Infants and Children (WIC), Vaccines for Children and Free or Reduced School Lunch.

The programs are mentioned in the flier, “Show your kids how much you love them – Apply for New Jersey’s Kid-Friendly Programs.”

“We believe that one of the primary reasons parents don’t take advantage of some state-offered programs and services is because they’re unaware they exist,” said DHS Commissioner Jennifer Velez. “It is our goal to have this flier distributed by any agency or organization that serves families, so that every eligible child can be enrolled.”

The flier that describes each of the five programs is available to all schools in English and Spanish.

“Many families don’t realize that the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program provides supplemental nutritious foods to infants and children up to the age of 5,” said DHSS Commissioner Mary O’Dowd. “And, every child needs their vaccines to attend school in New Jersey. If families are uninsured or underinsured, the Vaccines for Children program is available to them.”

Children ages 5 and up could be eligible for the New Jersey Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which provides monthly electronic benefits on an ATM-like card for unprepared foods and grocery purchases. Children qualified for WIC and the Free or Reduced Lunch program likely meet the criteria for NJ SNAP.

Copies of the flier can be downloaded from the DHS website at:

  State draws attention to various programs to help children