World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated all over the globe every year from August 1st – 7th to encourage breastfeeding and thereby improve the health of babies around the world. Breastfeeding is a universal solution that levels the playing field, giving everyone a fair start in life. This year’s theme is Breastfeeding: Foundation of Life. Here at Sixteenth Street WIC, we are here for moms who want the strongest foundation of health for their babies. Here are some of the things we do every day to support our families.
- Prenatal education. Becoming pregnant can feel like a whirlwind. There is a lot to learn about having a healthy pregnancy. Before you know it, it’s time to start preparing for baby’s arrival. Learning about breastfeeding: why it’s so important, how milk is made, how to help baby get the hang of it and how to navigate common issues are all topics that should be discussed before the baby arrives. For that reason, at Sixteenth Street WIC we offer:
- Baby Behavior Groups – Expectant moms and their supporters gather in a group setting to learn about the ways newborn babies communicate. With a focus on feeding cues, our families leave with newfound confidence they will be able to meet their baby’s needs.
- Personalized breastfeeding discussions at regular WIC appointments – this is a chance for families to ask specific questions about breastfeeding and discuss how it will look in their unique situation.
- Support at your fingertips – we also partner with a support app that gives our families solid information on best practices to support breastfeeding during pregnancy and the postpartum period.
- Breastfeeding Peer Counselor. Sometimes talking to a friend can be the best support for a new mother. Here at Sixteenth Street WIC, Aracelis is our peer counselor. She meets everyone during their pregnancy and follows through with them after the baby is born.
- 10 Certified Lactation Specialists on staff. We don’t just like breastfeeding – we actually know a lot about it. WIC is a great resource for questions and concerns. We are here at appointments and always available via phone during our office hours 8:00am-6:00pm Monday, Tuesday and Thursday; 9:30am-6:00pm Wednesday, and 7:30-3:30 Friday.
- Breast Pumps. If being separated from the baby at times is necessary, WIC can either help mom find a pump or provide one that meets her needs. We also guide her through using it, so she can get the best results.
- More WIC foods for breastfeeding mothers. Mothers on WIC who are fully or mostly breastfeeding their babies receive more WIC foods AND can receive benefits for an entire year after the baby is born. Mothers who do not, receive fewer foods and stop receiving benefits after 6 months.
- More baby foods. Babies who are fully breastfed receive more than double the amount of baby foods starting at 6 months of age.
Sixteenth Street WIC families are encouraged to stop in to celebrate World Breastfeeding Week with us this year! We will be showcasing our families’ thoughts on breastfeeding on the board in our lobby as well as capturing family pictures to take home. Families can also enter the raffle to have their family
picture enlarged and professionally matted & framed. Check out our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/sixteenthstreetWIC for more information.