World Breastfeeding Week 2019
Posted on 08/08/2019
WBW  2019 logo

Empower Parents, Enable Breastfeeding

World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated annually, August 1st to 7th, in an effort to protect, promote, and support breastfeeding. This year’s theme focuses on empowering parents and enabling breastfeeding. We can accomplish this by supporting parents on their breastfeeding journeys. In order to improve breastfeeding, fathers, partners, families, workplaces, and communities must come together to support mothers in any way possible.

On August 3rd, Benton-Franklin Health District participated in the Global Big Latch On, an event that started in New Zealand in 2005 to protect, promote and support breastfeeding women. Our moms were part of 18,672 moms around the world that came together to latch on their children in honor of this mission.  The Benton-Franklin Health District WIC program plays a vital role in the promotion of breastfeeding.  WIC’s breastfeeding peer counselors, International Board Certified Lactation Consultants, and other lactation professionals provide needed support to breastfeeding clients to improve health outcomes of moms and babies.

As policy and decision-makers, advocates, community members, and parents, we can create a supportive environment that empowers parents and enables breastfeeding.

Policy and decision makers can:

  • Implement national policies that promote flexible, family-friendly workplaces who support breastfeeding.
  • Promote/create tools that engage fathers and partners in the breastfeeding journey, as an effort to promote gender-equitable parenting.

Advocates can:

  • Showcase successful policy models that promote gender-equitable parenting and breastfeeding.
  • Engage with employers to implement breastfeeding-friendly workplaces by establishing support facilities like breastfeeding rooms and flexible work hours.
  • Increase access to programs that assist mothers, fathers/partners, and families to work together as a breastfeeding team.

Parents can: 

  • During pregnancy, seek information from a midwife, doctor, or lactation consultant on how to breastfeed optimally.
  • Ensure that the father/partner and family are informed about breastfeeding goals so they can provide the most support.
  • Use time during maternity/parental leave to establish a plan for continuing to breastfeed when you return to work.
  • Ask employers for breastfeeding support at the workplace.
  • Work with colleagues to advocate for maternity, parental, and breastfeeding rights at the work place.

Learn more about WIC’s breastfeeding peer counseling program by visiting our web page. More information about World Breastfeeding week can be found at https://worldbreastfeedingweek.org