WIC – Women, Infants & Children

2017 MFHS Champion Award: Sarah Arledge

At this year’s Annual Meeting & Community Awards Luncheon, MFHS will be presenting the MFHS Champion Award to Sarah Arledge. Ms. Arledge has participated in several of our programs, including WIC, maternity care and the Nurse-Family Partnership. She has generously given back to the organization time and time again since enrolling in our programs. Sarah is the face of our 2016 Annual Report. She has shared her story with some of our donors, and will be appearing in testimonial videos that we will be debuting this fall. Sarah also nominated MFHS for the United Way of Wyoming Valley Outstanding Partner Award, and spoke about her experience at their campaign kick-off this month.

Sarah  has been generous with her time and support of MFHS and we are thankful for all that she has done. She truly has been a champion for the agency over the past year, and we are thrilled to be presenting Sarah with the MFHS Champion Award on October 18th.

Healthy Pep Rally Snacks on PA Live!

MFHS Nutrition Education Coordinator Laurie Waskovich was back on PA Live! last week, cooking up some fun, easy recipes for their special Pep Rally Friday edition of the show. Laurie’s recipes are perfect for getting together with friends to watch football, either at the tailgate or at home! Both recipes got the seal of approval from the Coughlin High School cheerleaders and band, who were in the studio drumming up some school spirit before their game later that night.

You can watch both clips below, then grab the recipes and try them yourself!

Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

Ingredients

  • 1 medium cauliflower, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2/3 cup Buffalo hot sauce

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees, spray a large cookie sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together flour, water, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Add cauliflower florets and toss to coat. Spread evenly onto cookie sheet and place in the oven. Bake for 15 minutes, flipping once. Remove from the oven.
  3. In a separate bowl stir together melted butter and buffalo sauce. Add baked cauliflower and toss to coat. Spread evenly onto cookie sheet. Place back in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes or until crispy, flipping once.
  4. Remove from oven and let sit 10 minutes before serving.
  5. Serve with your favorite dressing and enjoy!

Crispy BBQ Roasted Chickpeas

Ingredients

  • 2 (15 ounce) cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil*
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

BBQ Seasoning:

  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Spread rinsed chickpeas out on a dishtowel or some paper towels and pat until they are all dry. Pick off any loose chickpea skins. Add the olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt and toss to coat. Roast chickpeas for 20-30 minutes, or until crispy and starting to brown. Toss chickpeas or shake the tray every so often.
  2. While the chickpeas are baking make the BBQ seasoning. Add all of the seasonings into a small bowl and mix until combined.
  3. As soon as the chickpeas come out of the oven add the BBQ seasoning and mix until all chickpeas are coated. Roasted chickpeas taste best when warm and directly out of the oven, but can be enjoyed when they are cool as well. They just won’t be as crispy.

Join us for a happy hour FUNdraiser on August 23rd

Join MFHS and our friends at Rodano’s Wednesday, August 23rd from 5:30 – 7:30 for a happy hour with a purpose! All proceeds raised will benefit our Nurse-Family Partnership holiday party. Our NFP staff throws the party every year for our clients – families receive gifts for their children, dinner, and pictures with Santa, all thanks to generous donations from the NEPA community.

The happy hour features no cover, raffle baskets and guest bartenders. All tips and a portion of sales will be generously donated by Rodano’s! Please join us on August 23rd and help us spread the word!

 

WIC Nutrition Program Expands Income Guidelines

Maternal and Family Health Services announced that the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Nutrition Program has expanded income guidelines allowing more families to participate in the free nutrition education program.

According to the new income guidelines for WIC, beginning on July 1, 2017, a family of four could earn $45,510 annually and qualify for WIC. For a family of three, the income limit is $37,777 to qualify, and a family of two can earn up to $30,044 and qualify for nutrition assistance.

The WIC Nutrition Program is funded through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and provides nutrition education and access to healthy foods for pregnant, postpartum and breastfeeding women, as well as infants and children under 5.  To qualify, participants must meet the income guidelines, have a nutritional or medical need, and live in Pennsylvania.

WIC provides participants with supplemental healthy foods which contain vital nutrients essential for healthy development during critical growth periods, such as pregnancy, infancy and early childhood.

WIC is the nation’s premier public health and nutrition education program with an overall goal to influence lifetime nutrition through positive health behaviors.  In addition to vouchers for nutritious foods, WIC participants receive nutrition education, breastfeeding support, immunization record checks, iron deficiency screening, farmers’ market vouchers and referrals for other health and social services.

You can find information for your local WIC office on our WIC Location Finder.

MFHS Outreach at Monday Farmer’s Market

MFHS is partnering with the City of Wilkes-Barre to conduct outreach at the new Monday Farmer’s Markets.  The Monday Farmer’s Markets on Public Square are part of healthy community initiative to expand access to fresh produce and connect families in need with available health and nutrition services.

Each Monday, MFHS will have an outreach table on Public Square during the market to provide information about all the programs available through MFHS, offer assistance to WIC participants utilizing their farmer’s market vouchers, and sign up new applicants for programs.  In addition, our Nutrition Education Coordinator and graduate dietetic intern will present cooking demonstrations using fresh, local produce.  Through a partnership with the Luzerne County Transportation Authority, this initiative includes an opportunity for WIC participants to get transportation between the local WIC Centers and Public Square on Mondays so they can visit the farmer’s market.  The Monday Farmer’s Markets will continue every week until October.

2017 Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program Available for WIC Participants

Maternal and Family Health Services announced that the agency’s WIC (Women, Infants and Children) Nutrition Centers are distributing farmers’ market vouchers to WIC participants. The Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) helps families with nutritional needs buy fresh fruits and vegetables from Pennsylvania farmers to help ensure good health for mothers and children and support community farmers’ markets.

FMNP provides qualifying WIC participants with $20 in vouchers to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables at farmers’ markets between June 1 and November 30.  Pregnant, breastfeeding and postpartum women, and children between the ages of 1 and 5 years old are eligible.

WIC Nutrition staff distributes the vouchers to WIC participants along with nutrition education emphasizing the importance of eating fresh fruits and vegetables and a list of participating farmers’ markets in the area.

The Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.  Across the Commonwealth, over 1000 farmers benefit from the program.

Pennsylvania WIC is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).  This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

2017 WIC PUBLIC MEETINGS

2017 WIC PUBLIC MEETINGS
Pennsylvania Department of Health, Bureau of Women, Infants and Children (WIC)

Your comments/suggestions for the WIC program are important to us! Please attend a meeting or submit written comments to the WIC State Agency at bmellott@pa.gov.

  • May 2, 2017, North Central PA Regional Planning and Development Commission, 49 Ridgmont Drive, Ridgway, PA
  • May 3, 2017, Maternal and Family Health Services, Inc., 15 Public Square, Suite 600, Wilkes‐Barre, PA
  • May 4, 2017, Community Action Partnership of Cambria County, 516 Main St., 5th Floor, Johnstown, PA
  • May 4, 2017, Community Health Services, Inc., 747 Terrace St., Meadville, PA
  • May 9, 2017, Adagio Health, 323 Sunset Drive, Butler, PA
  • May 9, 2017, South Central Community Action Program, 153 N. Stratton St. Gettysburg, PA
  • May 10, 2017, Bucks County Health Department, Neshaminy Manor Center, 1282 Almshouse Road, Doylestown, PA
  • May 15, 1917, Community Action Southwest, 150 West Beau St., Suite 408, Washington, PA
  • May 17, 2017, NORTH, Inc. Philadelphia WIC Office, 1300 W. Lehigh Avenue, Suite 104, Philadelphia, PA
  • May 19, 2017, Community Progress Council, 130 W. Market St., York, PA
  • May 23, 2017, Selinsgrove WIC Office, 713 Bridge St., Suite 7, Selinsgrove, PA

In accordance with 7 C.F.R. §246.4(b), the Department of Health has scheduled eleven public meetings for the purpose of obtaining comments and recommendations for the development of the 2018 State Plan of Program Operation and Administration for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) in Pennsylvania.

The Department invites comments on all aspects of the Program’s Operations.

Persons wishing to give comments at this meeting are requested to pre‐register by calling 717‐783‐1289. Anyone unable to attend a meeting but wishing to express their views, may submit an email with written comments by May 31, 2017, to bmellott@pa.gov or mail comments to the Department of Health, Bureau of Women, Infants and Children (WIC) 625 Forster St., 7 West, Health and Welfare Building, Harrisburg, PA 17120.

The meetings will be held 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and are subject to cancellation without notice. There will not be a WIC presentation at the meetings but WIC resource materials will be available.

If you require reasonable accommodations in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, please contact Amanda Killion at 717‐783‐1289 for assistance.

Pennsylvania WIC is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

PA Live: Easy Recipes for Busy Moms

MFHS Nutrition Education Coordinator Laurie Waskovich was back in the PA Live kitchen yesterday cooking up some healthy, fast, mom approved recipes for the new year. Watch the video now on PAHomepage.com and then try out these healthy and delicious recipes below.

One-pot Pasta Primavera

This is easily customized with your favorite in-season veggies or different types of pasta.

Ingredients

4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
8 ounces linguine, uncooked
1 small onion, halved and sliced thin
1 pound broccoli crowns, cut into large florets (about 2 cups)
1 1/2 pounds asparagus, ends snapped off and cut into 2-inch pieces
4 ounces sliced white button mushrooms (about 1 cup)
4 large cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (less for milder heat; more to increase heat)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup frozen peas
1 small handful fresh parsley, chopped (about 1/2 cup chopped)
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest
Additional salt and pepper to taste
Additional Parmesan cheese for serving, if desired

Instructions

Add the broth, linguine, onion, broccoli, asparagus, mushrooms, garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper to a large pot set over high heat. Drizzle the olive oil over the top.

As soon as it comes to a boil, set the timer for 7 minutes and start tossing constantly with long-handled tongs.

Continue boiling and tossing. As soon as the 7 minutes is up, add the peas, parsley, heavy whipping cream, Parmesan, and lemon zest and continue cooking, tossing constantly, for 1-2 more minutes, until the pasta and veggies appear tender. Remove from heat.

Note that much of the liquid will have evaporated, but not all. And that’s okay! Let the pasta sit for a couple of minutes to cool; the sauce will continue to thicken during that time. Taste and add additional salt and pepper if desired. Garnish with additional Parmesan cheese

 

Healthy No Bake Cookies

Ingredients

3 tablespoons skim milk
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/3 cup crunchy peanut butter
1/8 cup wheat germ ( heaping)
1 1/2 teaspoons ground flax seeds (optional)
1 cup quick oatmeal

Directions

Heat milk, sugar and cocoa powder over high heat until boiling, stirring constantly.
Take off heat and stir in vanilla and peanut butter; stir until peanut butter has melted completely.
Stir in wheat germ and oatmeal.
Drop by large spoonfuls onto wax paper or eat immediately.

*This recipe is VERY flexible. If you don’t have wheat germ or flax seed, just use more oatmeal. The recipe above should work out just perfectly and does most of the time, but if your cookies come out crumbly, use less oatmeal next time. If they never set, use more oatmeal next time.

2016 Outstanding Community Service Award: Donna Gatcha-Hines

donna-hines

The 2016 Outstanding Community Service Award is being given to Donna Gatcha-Hines, for her long standing commitment to volunteerism and su

Donna Hines is the founder of The Lost Self: Life After Narcissism. After graduating with her MPA (Public Administration/Criminal Justice) she married a malignant narcissist for 11 yrs. Donna graduated with high honors and is a member of Alpha Phi Sigma National Criminal Justice Honor Society and Sigma Delta Kappa. She divorced in 2013 which resulted in homelessness, bankruptcy, and long term unemployment. She’s currently living below the level of poverty with her 3 children (1 of which is medically disabled) while seeking employment. She was left without income, assets, savings, or credit and struggles daily to survive.

Her story of food insecurities and poverty was only one of 20 nationwide to be selected to be shared with Congress by Rosa DeLauro (D-CT):

 

“My son was born with a medical disability that caused stomach reflux. In order to eat, he needed a specific formula, which was extremely expensive. Thankfully, WIC was there to help out. SNAP and the National School Lunch Program were and are beneficial for our survival. My kids depend on nutrition and proper food, and without these programs, we wouldn’t be able to survive. The National School Lunch Program helps my kids tremendously because I simply can’t afford to feed them three meals a day.

 

During these times, nutrition assistance programs have been my life support. Because my children are able to have nutritious and healthy foods, they are happy and excelling in school. My son, who was supposed to have mental and speech delays, has overcome so many obstacles and continues to do well in school. His success and my other children’s successes are testaments to the impact and benefits of these nutrition assistance programs. I hope that Congress can see this importance and will continue to put more funding into these programs because they truly are a means of survival for us.”

 

Her self help page, The Lost Self: Life After Narcissism serves 45 countries worldwide in 45 different languages with nearly 24k members worldwide. This website was created to help people reclaim & rebuild their lives as they move forward from a narcissistic relationship.

In addition to raising her family alone she volunteers her time. She continues working unpaid with 12 nonprofits. Donna has achieved many national awards for public service. She is a national award winning freelance writer, national award winning volunteer, and worldwide advocate for domestic violence. She hopes to write a book and share her story in helping others heal to know they are not alone nor to blame once her children are grown. Congratulations Donna and thank you for all the work you do to improve our community through your website and your volunteering!

2016 Outstanding Community Partner Award: Dr. Lynn Coslett-Charlton and Dr. Sandra Mattison

Dr. Sandra Mattison

Dr. Sandra Mattison

Dr. Lynn Coslett-Charlton

Dr. Lynn Coslett-Charlton

The 2016 MFHS Outstanding Community Partner award is going to two physicians who have demonstrated a deep, ongoing commitment to improving women’s health in Northeast PA: Dr. Lynn Coslett-Charlton and Dr. Sandra Mattison. Both doctors have supported our mission of care through their work at OBG-GYN Associates and through their volunteer work at Volunteers in Medicine.

As providers in the MFHS HealthyWoman network, and as volunteer doctors at VIM, both doctors ensure women without insurance are able to receive life saving gynecological care and mammograms. These services are often unattainable for the uninsured population without the dedication of doctors like Dr. Coslett-Charlton and Dr. Mattison.

Outside of her work with MFHS and VIM, Dr. Coslett-Charlton has also served in several leadership roles in advocacy for the American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology. (ACOG). She was recently named Chair of the PA Section of ACOG, has served as PAACOG legislative Chair for the past several years, has been selected for the national ACOG Government Affairs Committee and is on the board of OBGYN PAC. She has also served as the OBGYN member on the PAMED Specialty Leadership Conference and currently serves on PAMEDs Legislative Advocacy Committee.

Dr. Sandra Mattison has been a valuable partner in women’s health, both in and out of the office. She speaks fluent Spanish, which is invaluable in helping our Spanish language population understand and take charge of their reproductive health. Dr. Mattison is also an active volunteer in her church and community, and most recently helped organize a community fair in Kirby park, that featured vendors with health information for women, children and families.

Congratulations to both Dr. Coslett-Charlton and Dr. Mattison and thank you for your continued commitment to the health of women and families in Northeast Pennsylvania!