Did you know that this is World Breastfeeding week? I’ve even celebrated on my home facebook page with the above logo and a picture of me nursing my daughter.

I don’t have many pictures of me breastfeeding my children, as I’m the main picture taker of the family and I wasn’t as good at nursing and multitasking. However, it was important to me that my children fed from the breast as much and as long as they could, especially in the first 6 months. We didn’t introduce foods until after they were six months old. They both weaned me (sadly) after their first birthdays, but I was happy to have gone as long as I could. Especially since I didn’t have an awesome milk supply.

 

Just like I tell my doula clients and/or friends: Everyone is different, don’t compare yourself to anyone when it comes to breastfeeding.  We all do what we can and every drop of mother’s milk counts. Even if it’s only one nursing a day, that could make the difference in their brain development or your attachment to your child, or proper nourishment and defense against illness.

 

The initiative of the World Breastfeeding Week 2012 is impressive:

 

What is the Global Strategy?

wbw2011 photoThe World Health Organisation (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) jointly developed and launched the Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding (GS) in 2002 reaffirming the four Innocenti targets set in 1995, and setting additional targets. The GS has identified a clear need for optimal infant feeding practices in reducing malnutrition as well as poverty. It is based on a human rights approach and calls for the development of comprehensive national policies on infant and young child feeding. It provides guidance on how to protect, promote and support exclusive breastfeeding for first six months, and continued breastfeeding for two years or beyond together with adequate, appropriate and indigenous complementary feeding starting from the age of six months.


How and Why we should monitor status of implementation of the Global Strategy?
Handling out of WBTi ReportsIn 2004 – 2005 the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN) one of WABA’s core partners launched the World Breastfeeding Trends Initiative (WBTi) , to track, assess and monitor the implementation of the Global Strategy. According to UNICEF’s State of the World’s Children Report 2011, 136.7 million babies are born worldwide and only 32.6 % of them are breastfed exclusively in the first six months. According to the WBTi assessment of 40 countries , most of the 40 countries do not have an effective IYCF policy with an adequate budget for implementation. To be able to increase breastfeeding rates, it is important to assess policies and programmes and take action accordingly.

If you are local to Cedar Rapids, or live in Eastern Iowa, there is a nurse in scheduled here on Saturday for the Big Latch On.

Through the end of August you can read articles related to breastfeeding from the Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health for free!