WIC – Women, Infants & Children

Save the Date: 2019 MFHS Healthy Heroes Walk!

On June 15th at PNC Field, MFHS will be participating in the 2nd Annual Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Joined by 11 other local nonprofits, we will be celebrating kids helping kids through our Healthy Heroes Walk. We encourage walkers to come dressed as their favorite superheroes, and come ready to have fun!

This exciting event features not only a 5k walk, but also a 1 mile walk and a variety of fun family activities and prizes. There will be music, activities, mascots, snacks, and so much more! You can read more about what MFHS has planned here, and keep checking back as we are still adding details!

100% of funds raised for this event will go towards supporting families served by MFHS. Click here to register a team of your family and friends, and come out to walk for women and children in our community.

Delayed Opening January 31, 2019

All MFHS locations will open at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 31, due to the predicted extreme cold conditions.

To reschedule appointments, please call your local MFHS office and we will be happy to help. Please exercise caution and allow for extra time while traveling. If there are any changes to MFHS office schedules, we will update this page. Stay safe everyone!

Recognizing Maternal Health Awareness Day at MFHS

Wilkes-Barre, PA: Maternal & Family Health Services, Inc. (MFHS) held a news conference today featuring State Senator Lisa Baker, and Dr. Lynne Coslett-Charlton to announce that January 23rd is the first official Maternal Health Awareness Day in Pennsylvania. Sen. Baker introduced the Senate resolution because of significantly rising maternal mortality rates in Pennsylvania and across the country. Representative Eddie Day Pashinski supported a similar resolution in the House, marking this day to recognize the women who die from complications of pregnancy or childbirth.

The House has also recently formed the Maternal Mortality Review Committee, which is working to gather information and find solutions to address some of the most prevalent medical issues facing pregnant women. Dr. Lynn Coslett-Charlton, who chairs the Pennsylvania section of the American College of OB-GYN, was the lead in introducing the bill to develop the MMRC. MFHS President & CEO Bette Saxton was appointed to the committee last year.

“I’d like to thank Dr. Coslett-Charlton and Maternal and Family Health Services for hosting us today, and for your leadership in advancing what I believe is a very simple policy approach that Pennsylvania needed to adopt,” said Senator Baker. “The creation of the fourteen member committee that will help us look at prevention, education, training and opportunities to improve the health and wellbeing of mothers and their babies.”

More women die from pregnancy complications in the United States than in any other developed country in the world. Despite advances in medicine and medical technologies, the United States saw a 26 percent increase in the death rate of expectant mothers from 2000-14. And according to a 2016 report from America’s Health Rankings, based on Centers for Disease Control National Vital Statistics System data, Pennsylvania ranks 21st in the nation in maternal death rates. Maternal Health Awareness Day is designed to highlight this problem and the work being done to improve maternal health across Pennsylvania.

“Maternal and Family Health Services is best known for its prevention and intervention services,” said MFHS President & CEO Bette Cox Saxton. “Last year we served over 5,200 low-income pregnant and postpartum women and over 12,000 infants. We know we have a vital role to play in helping mothers recognize key risk factors associated with maternal and infant mortality. I am honored to be on the newly formed Maternal Mortality Review Committee to begin the important work of reducing maternal deaths in Pennsylvania.”

“I can think of no better place to roll out the first Maternal Health Awareness Day in Pennsylvania than Maternal and Family Health Services,” said Dr. Coslett-Charlton. “I want to especially thank Senator Baker for supporting ACOG’s goal of creating the Maternal Mortality Review Committee and for the resolution to introduce Maternal Health Awareness Day and for advancing women and children’s health.”

Two Opportunities to Match Your Gifts on #GivingTuesday 2018!

#GivingTuesday is November 27, 2018 – just two weeks away! MFHS is thrilled to announce that this year, there are even more ways for you to support us on #GivingTuesday, including two opportunities to have your gift matched! Here is the complete breakdown of everything that’s happening this year for #GivingTuesday!

  • AllOne Charities is hosting its first matching gift fundraiser for 31 non-profits across Northeast Pennsylvania for #GivingTuesday! All donations made on the AllOne site for MFHS will be matched up to $1000. Even better, AllOne is celebrating #GivingTuesday by matching gifts for an entire week! Any donations made from November 21st – 28th are all eligible to be matched! Visit the AllOne match day page starting on Wednesday the 21st to make your matching gift.
  • Facebook is partnering with PayPal to match gifts on #GivingTuesday. This year, they will match a total of 7 million dollars worth of donations! Each participating non-profit can get up to $250,000 matched, and each individual donor can give a gift up to $20,000 that will be matched. In 2017, matching dollars on Facebook ran out early, so we are asking anyone interested in donating on Facebook to make your gift early. The closer to 8 AM EST on November 27th, the better! You can donate directly on our Facebook page by clicking the blue donate button. You can also create a Facebook Fundraiser for MFHS by visiting our page here, and all gifts made in fundraisers are also eligible for matching dollars.
  • Download your MFHS UNselfie sheet and tell us why you give to MFHS! Last year, our donors, friends, family and staff all shared why they support MFHS and why they give, #FamilyToFamily. We shared the pictures across social media, and they were a huge hit! Help us do it again by snapping your picture and sending them to us on Facebook, or by posting them on Facebook with our hashtag.

August 1st-7th is World Breastfeeding Week!

Starting Wednesday, August 1st, the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) will host World Breastfeeding Week 2018, a global initiative aimed at educating and promoting the multifaceted benefits of mothers breastfeeding their babies. The three areas of emphasis regarding this year’s World Breastfeeding Week are “(1) preventing malnutrition in all its forms, (2) ensuring food security, even in times of crisis, and (3) breaking the cycle of poverty.” These three focal points are significant ways that breastfeeding can have a positive impact on societies across the globe.

Breastfeeding is a cost-free, environmentally-free way to give your baby all the nutrition he or she needs. Breastfeeding has a significant positive impact on both mother and baby, with health, social, and economic benefits. Some of the health benefits for baby include prevention of malnutrition and increased immunity from certain illnesses; other benefits are improved intelligence and emotional bonding with the mother. Benefits for a breastfeeding mother include reduced risk of certain cancers and hypertension. WABA, and related organizations like UNICEF, advocate for exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life, followed by supplementing until 2 years of age.

At Maternal and Family Health Services, we foster a positive, judgment-free environment in which new moms can learn how to safely breastfeed their babies. All MFHS WIC Nutrition Centers provide clients with breastfeeding education and support. And numerous WIC Nutrition locations participate in the Breastfeeding Peer Counselor Program. This program gives breastfeeding WIC moms the opportunity to receive support and tips from a former client who previously breastfed and is now a passionate advocate. We strive to inform families in Northeast Pennsylvania about breastfeeding as the perfect infant food, and change public perceptions about breastfeeding.

 

Thank You Sun Buick GMC for Sponsoring our 2018 Hole-In-One Contest

Pictured: Jim Schilling, MFHS Development & Communications Officer, and Lori Guitson, Owner, Sun Buick GMC.

Sun Buick GMC, Moosic, is sponsoring the hole-in-one contest at the Maternal and Family Health Services 25th Annual Golf Tournament on Thursday, June 14, at Blue Ridge Trail Golf Club, Mountain Top.

The hole-in-one prize is a 2018 Buick Regal TOUR X and will go to the lucky golfer at the MFHS Tournament who gets a hole-in-one on hole 9 of the Ridge course.

For more information about golf and sponsorship opportunities, e-mail golf@mfhs.org or call 1-800-367-6347.

The WIC Farmer’s Market Program is back!

Just in time for summer, the WIC Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) will begin soon. The program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, provides WIC participants with vouchers to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables at local farmer’s markets from June 1st through November 30th.

These vouchers provide additional opportunity to inform participants of the importance of eating healthy foods like fruits and vegetables. WIC Nutrition staff will distribute these $20 vouchers to participants, along with a list of nearby participating farmer’s markets. WIC participants, including children ages 1-5 as well as pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum mothers are eligible to receive these vouchers.

In addition to the health benefits for WIC participants, the WIC Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program also supports over 1,000 community farmers. The Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Supplemental Nutrition Program of Pennsylvania is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

UPDATED: Weather Alert March 7 & 8, 2018

Due to the inclement weather and Governor Wolf declaring a state of emergency, MFHS offices  will be closed Wednesday March 7th, and will not open until 9 am on Thursday March 8th, in order to give crews time to clean the roads. Our offices will be open Wednesday morning, but if there are changes as the storm arrives, we will post updates here.

If you have an appointment at any of our locations on the 7th or 8th and won’t be able to make it due to the weather, please call your local office, or our administration office at 570-826-1777, and we will be happy to help you reschedule your appointment.

Save the Date: MFHS Healthy Heroes Walk!

Click to enlarge

On June 16th at PNC Field, MFHS will be participating in the Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Joined by 11 other local nonprofits, we will be celebrating kids helping kids through our Healthy Heroes Walk. We encourage walkers to come dressed as their favorite superheroes, and come ready to have fun!

This exciting event features not only a 5k walk, but also a 1 mile walk and a variety of fun family activities and prizes. We will have face painting, balloon animals, mascots, snacks, and so much more! You can read more about what MFHS has planned here, and keep checking back as we are still adding details!

100% of funds raised for this event will go towards supporting families served by MFHS. Click here to register a team of your family and friends, and come out to walk for women and children in our community.

UPDATED: Weather Delay – January 17, 2018

UPDATE: The Hazleton WIC center is closed for Wednesday, January 17th.

All MFHS locations will open at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 17, due to the predicted snow fall. Staff at your local offices will work with you to reschedule any appointments that need to be changed. Please stay safe and warm!