How to be an Advocate for a Breastfeeding Mother
4 Ways YOU can be a Supportive Breastfeeding Advocate
Breastfeeding is a powerful thing – not only does it provide all the energy and nutrients that an infant needs for the first six months of life and plenty of benefits all the way through their second year, but it is also one of the best ways to promote secure mother-child attachment from birth. Becoming a breastfeeding advocate means sharing the incredible benefits that breast milk provides, without judging others who may choose to go a different route.
At Champions, we strive to help all parents achieve their feeding goals. Our abcProgram ensures parents know all of their options and are on the right track to meet their goals. Helping to increase our community’s knowledge of the benefits of breastfeeding, talking about breastfeeding health disparities, and supporting all moms on their unique breastfeeding journeys is an equally important part of becoming a breastfeeding advocate. This week, we’ll talk about how YOU can become a breastfeeding advocate!
4 Ways to be an Advocate for a Breastfeeding Mother
1. Share Resources
Most hospitals have a lactation consultant on staff to help new parents learn how to properly breastfeed their child. Once parents leave the hospital, they may need more guidance, but aren’t sure where to turn. As a breastfeeding advocate, you can learn about and share active resources in your area to connect parents with lactation help and breastfeeding support groups. As Tampa’s only no-cost, universal access professional lactation support program, the abcProgram is here to support any and every family in need in our community. For more information, click here.
2. Celebrate National Breastfeeding Awareness Month
National Breastfeeding Awareness month is celebrated each year during the month of August to raise awareness and drive action on themes related to breastfeeding. You can join the celebration by sharing breastfeeding infographics, facts, statistic, and resources on your social media channels using the hashtag #breastfeedingawarenessmonth.
3. Advocate at your Workplace
Whether your workplace accommodates breastfeeding parents or has room for improvement, be sure to brush up on your rights as a breastfeeding employee. According to the Department of Labor, federal law requires employers to provide reasonable break times for an employee to express breast milk and are also required to provide a place, other than a bathroom, to be used by an employee to express breast milk. Is your workplace interested in learning how to become more breastfeeding friendly? Reach out to us – we can help!
4. Become a Mentor
If you’re a breastfeeding mother, share your experience, tips and tricks with other new moms! While you may not be able to provide professional advice, you have personal experience that can help encourage a new mom who has reached a rough patch on her journey. You can also become a Breastfeeding Leader through your local La Leche League.
Breastfeeding is hard work! In order to be successful, most parents need a strong system of support. It’s important to know that mom and baby are both learning and it usually won’t go off without a hitch in the beginning. Having people who are advocating for your breastfeeding success can make the world of a difference. Becoming an advocate can help shape the way our world views breastfeeding and can cause a positive effect on the quality of life for families in our community.
Links to Resources:
Department of Labor – Breastfeeding at Work
Breastfeeding Health Disparities
Positive Baby-Feeding Practices (Breastfeeding vs. Formula)