“I support breastfeeding because it provides a bridge from womb to world, delivering the infant with immunoglobulins tailored to the environment the infant lives in.”
Mums, mums-to-be and their family and friends are being invited to be part of Breastfeeding Celebration Week in Walsall.
Walsall Healthcare’s Infant Feeding Team is working in partnership with Walsall’s Maternity Voices Partnership (MVP) to promote the Public Health England initiative which runs from 17-21 June.
Hazel Brookes, Specialist Midwife for Infant Feeding, said: “We have been collecting quotes from people across the trust explaining why they support breastfeeding and visitors to Walsall Manor Hospital will be able to see their photos and quotes turned into a special set of bunting for the week.
“Breastfeeding Celebration Week is all about promoting the benefits of skin to skin contact both immediately after birth and during the early weeks and months of life as well as highlighting the nutritional and health benefits to both mum and baby.
“With Walsall being the 30th poorest borough in the country and with a staggering 10 year age inequality gap it’s time to acknowledge the role that breastfeeding plays in bridging the gap. This is a public health imperative for which government, policy makers, communities and families all share responsibility.
“Both our Maternity and Neonatal Services at Walsall are working towards being Baby Friendly accredited. Improving breastfeeding initiation rates and supporting women to continue breastfeeding must be considered of paramount importance in improving the health of the population as beginning life a breastfed infant yields benefits for the individual that are life-long.”
The Infant feeding team and MVP, which is made up of women and their families, commissioners and providers who work together to develop local maternity care, will have a stand in Costa Coffee throughout next week where mums and mums-to-be can find support and information.
“Women need to have this vital information and support so they can make an informed choice about breastfeeding,” added Hazel. “A support network is needed especially in the early days of learning to breastfeed, but with the right support and encouragement it can become a really positive and special experience.
“I’d urge anyone with any questions, concerns or worries to come and visit our stand next week between 12noon and 3pm where they can be assured of a friendly welcome and can gain so much from women who will be sharing their experience and knowledge.”