The peer mentors of the Baby's Best Chance program were busy in October. You may have noticed beautiful pictures of babies and breastfeeding mothers during World Breastfeeding Week of Oct. 1 to 7th. On Saturday, October 5th at 11:00 a.m. in Gyro Park, 14 women and 15 infants participated in the 11th Quintessence Breastfeeding Challenge for Boundary moms.
The Breastfeeding Challenge occurs all over the world as sites challenge to have the most children breastfeeding at one time in a geographic area to raise awareness about the benefits of breastfeeding and the challenges that many mothers still face. See www.babyfriendly.ca for more information.
The health benefits of breastfeeding are remarkable for infants and mothers. For infants, breastfeeding provides protection from childhood illnesses and decreases the likelihood of obesity and diabetes later in life. For mothers, breastfeeding reduces the risk of breast and ovarian cancers. For these reasons, among others, the World Health Organization recommends that women exclusively breastfeed their babies for six months and continue to breastfeed for two years and beyond. Despite the well-documented benefits of breastfeeding, women face many challenges including lack of support and public acceptance. Women report that the challenge of breastfeeding in public is a major barrier to success.
Thank you to the families who supported the challenge by attending and the photo campaign by submitting wonderful photos of breastfeeding and to the following businesses who showed support for the visual displays of local mothers breastfeeding: Christina Lake Medical Clinic, Boundary Medical Clinic, BCCRR, Boundary Women’s Centre, New West Trading, Grand Forks Public Library, Grand Forks Credit Union, Value Drug Mart, and Boundary Strong Starts.
For support or information on breastfeeding contact Public Health at 250-443-3150, Baby’s Best Chance at 250-442-5355 or attend the weekly Boundary Breastfeeding Café Tuesdays at 10 to share experiences and ask questions over tea and a fresh scone.
For November they will be helping families celebrate National Child Day on Nov 19th at Perley Gym with a free supper from5:30 - 7:00 and activities for children. View the posters around town and come and participate. with us.
-- Written by Jen Edwards (Peer Mentor) and Cynthia Garnett (Program Coordinator of Baby's Best Chance)