North Carolina-- Tuesday, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) announced that because of the federal shutdown the agency can't provide vouchers to families who receive Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC) after October.
READ: Shutdown: DHHS To Stop Issuing WIC Funds
Wednesday, Food Lion made a $500,000 donation in gift cards to food banks across the state to support citizens who need food assistance to feed their families. During its announcement, DHHS encouraged families to lean on food banks for help.
The company released this statement about the donation: "Food Lion is pleased to take a leading role across the state in providing critical funding to North Carolina food banks that will begin to receive increased requests in the coming weeks," said Beth Newlands Campbell, president of Food Lion. "In North Carolina, one in four children face hunger each day, and parents are forced to make difficult decisions, like buying formula or paying rent, to provide their children with the nutrition they need. We're hopeful that today's donation helps families to make fewer of those tough choices, particularly during this time."
WATCH: Families Feel Impact of WIC Shutdown
The gift cards, which are in $5 increments and will be distributed to food banks in Asheville, Charlotte, Elizabeth City, Fayetteville, Raleigh and Winston-Salem that serve counties throughout the state.
Food Banks that will receive the gift cards include:
• Food Bank of the Albemarle
• Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina
• Inter-Faith Food Shuttle
• MANNA FoodBank
• Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina
• Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest North Carolina
• Second Harvest Food Bank of Southeast North Carolina
Update: Late Thursday, the state announced that funding was restored to the WIC program through the end of October.