Milk Mates is the newest Breastfeeding World project! Conceptualized by a local Central Indiana mom; it’s geared towards supporting new breastfeeding mothers. Breastfeeding World began as a photography project– its goal to normalize breastfeeding by showcasing the beauty of the bond between mother and child. From there, we have grown. From our Coast to Coast Big Latch On events, to our amazing team of volunteer bloggers, to our Social Media Outreaches and Giveaways- our goal is to support mothers, where they are. We aim always to “Share the Breastfeeding Love.” Which is now why we are so excited to announce the pilot of our newest project- Milk Mates. Milk Mates is a big sister, little sister style support program. Beginning in Central Indiana, Milk mates will help new or struggling mothers who want to meet their nursing goals but need more support.
The Struggle is Real
Recently, an Indianapolis new station, Wish-TV 8, did a story on the breastfeeding rates in Indiana. The findings were surprising. The article states that while the numbers of infants exclusively breastfed by 6 month is low across the country (22.6%), in Indiana, the number is only 16%. (Find out more about the national and state averages on the 2016 CDC breastfeeding report card, here.)
It begs a question. When 81% of infant’s are born with the parents intending to breastfeed, why is it that only 22% (or 16% in Indiana’s case) are still going strong at 6 months of age?
Photo Credit Phosphorus Photography for Breastfeeding World:
There are many factors at play. Whether the rates are low due to proper support in the hospitals, educated lactation care, mothers returning to work, relying on a pump, societal pressures- it all comes down to one simple answer.
Lack of support.
The Concept is Simple
Our team at Breastfeeding World stewed over how we can help these rates. As a Breastfeeding project geared towards mother support, normalizing breastfeeding, and “Sharing the Breastfeeding Love”, we figured that the best thing we could do is to create an emotional support system for mothers who want to meet those breastfeeding goals.
And so, Milk Mates was born.
The idea behind the Milk Mates Project is simple. Pair an experienced mom (who has nursed 1 or more children for 6 months or more) with a new or struggling nursing mother or pregnant mom, in a “Big Sister, Little Sister” type of format. Our hope is that with more emotional support, mothers will feel more inspired to reach their goals. At minimum the Milk Mates program is an excellent way to connect like-minded women in the community. Motherhood is lonely! Milk Mates can be a solution, particularly for women who feel they don’t have the proper support in their personal environment.
What Milk Mates is NOT:
Milk Mates is not designed as a substitute for seeking help from a trained medical professional. For lactation-specific questions, Breastfeeding World always recommends seeking help through a local IBCLC or Breastfeeding USA counselor. You can find a working list of Central Indiana lactation counselors, support groups, and IBCLC’s in our Facebook Files.
Interested in Joining Breastfeeding World’s Milk Mate’s Project, Central Indiana?
Find out more details here.
Register to be a “Milk Mate Mentor” or “Milk Mate Sister” here
And don’t forget, Central Indiana Moms; keep up with the latest breastfeeding news in our community by joining our Facebook Group. Central Indiana’s Breastfeeding World.
Be sure to join us in our social media accounts and be up to date with the progress of our project!
And… Don’t forget to share your brelfies using our hashtag
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- The Motherhood Support System You Were Looking For Is Here- The Milk Mates Project - September 12, 2017
- Finding Unity at Central Indiana’s 2017 Big Latch On - August 24, 2017