July 31, 2023
MCHD to observe National Breastfeeding Month
MOBILE, Ala. — National Breastfeeding Month is observed each August. The theme in 2023 is “This is Our Why.”
The Mobile County Health Department (MCHD) and its Women, Infants & Children (WIC) supplemental nutrition program are major proponents of breastfeeding.
“Breastfeeding provides vital nutrition for infants and should be celebrated,” said Monique McMillan, the District Nutrition Director. “Meridith Gardner, our breastfeeding coordinator, will be hosting breastfeeding information booths at all five of our WIC clinics.
“We have collaborated with the Home Visitation and Maternal & Child Health programs to co-host these events to provide information about their services to our participants as well.”
The booths will be set up at these locations:
August 1 – Keeler Memorial Building (251 North Bayou Street in Mobile), 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
August 3 — Southwest Mobile Health Center (5580 Inn Road in Mobile), 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
August 7 – Semmes Health Center (3810 Wulff Road East), 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
August 8 – Citronelle Health Center (19250 North Mobile Street), 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
August 9 — Eight Mile Health Center (4009 Saint Stephens Road in Prichard), 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Through MCHD’s WIC supplemental nutrition program, it offers the in-person breastfeeding support group titled The Lactation Circle. The team is led by Gardner, who is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, and is staffed by peer counselors who encourage breastfeeding, address breastfeeding issues, and answer questions for those who choose to breastfeed.
Unlimited, 24/7 access to infant feeding support is now available to participants served by the Alabama WIC Program. This is done exclusively for WIC participants through a partnership with Pacify Health through one streamlined app at no cost to the mother.
Many protective health benefits are conferred by breastfeeding. For infants, these include fewer middle ear infections, fewer cases of necrotizing enterocolitis (a potentially fatal gastrointestinal disorder in premature infants), and fewer infant deaths. Breastfeeding can also reduce women’s risk for breast and ovarian cancer, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure.
WIC Breastfeeding Week is celebrated each year during the first week of August. This year’s theme is “Enabling Breastfeeding: Making a difference for working parents.”
Indigenous Milk Medicine Week will be celebrated August 8-14. Asian American Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Breastfeeding week will be celebrated August 12-21. Black Breastfeeding week will be celebrated August 25-31 with the theme being “We Outside! Celebrating Connection and Our Communities.”
For more information on National Breastfeeding Month, visit https://www.usbreastfeeding.org/national-breastfeeding-month.html, and https://wicworks.fns.usda.gov/resources/national-wic-breastfeeding-week.