Breastfeeding is the most natural start to life for a baby and can have lifelong health benefits for both mother and baby.
Breastfeeding protects the baby against ear and chest infections, stomach upsets, diarrhoea, asthma, eczema, allergies and even obesity. Breastfeeding Mothers are less likely to develop breast and ovarian cancer and osteoporosis later in life.
Becoming Baby Friendly
Both Lewisham and Queen Elizabeth are working towards gaining full Unicef Baby Friendly accreditation. The Baby Friendly standards aim to improve the information, support and encouragement provided in order to promote, protect and support breastfeeding and appropriate introduction to solid foods. This means that all Greenwich and Lewisham midwives, health visitors and other health and children’s centre professionals will have Baby Friendly training in supporting breastfeeding effectively. For more information on the UNICEF Baby Friendly initiative please see www.unicef.org.uk/babyfriendly
Many mothers find they need some support with breastfeeding. This can be anytime from getting started through to your child’s final breastfeeds.
Babies don’t need anything but breastmilk for the first six months to provide all the necessary nutrition. Giving anything else will decrease the supply of breastmilk and lessen the health benefits of breastfeeding.
Solids can be introduced alongside the usual milk feeds from six months, when the baby’s development shows they are ready to cope with solids well.
The Department of Health recommends breastfeeding for at least a year, as it continues to provide both significant nutrition and protection from illnesses.
NHS breastfeeding website
National Childbirth Trust
National breastfeeding support
To talk to a breastfeeding supporter on the phone, you can call the following support/help lines.
Breastfeeding support in Lewisham and Greenwich
For a current list of breastfeeding support groups please click the link below.
Breast feeding groups in the community can offer you help and support when getting started with breastfeeding right through to your child’s final breastfeeds.
Breastfeeding groups are also a good place to meet other mothers informally. You are welcome to attend during pregnancy and ask any questions you may have about feeding your baby.
Training as a peer supporter
The Breastfeeding Network peer support (mum-to-mum support) course covers the knowledge and skills needed to support other new mums to breastfeed, in the Lewisham community.
This peer support course gives learners a nationally recognised, open college network qualification which along with the volunteer experience and up to date references, could help with job opportunities or as a route into further education.
The course is open to mothers of all ages and from many different backgrounds; to enable them to widen their knowledge, skills and experience to support breastfeeding in Lewisham.
To apply for the Helper course you do not need any qualifications, all we ask is that you have had some experience of breastfeeding your baby and a passion and commitment to volunteer and help other Lewisham mums through their breastfeeding journey.
The Breastfeeding Network Helper course will start Autumn 2016 and will consist of one 2 hour session per week, run over 12 term-time weeks. There will be a crèche facility available with babies in arms welcome in the training room.
To find out more and register your interest, please email or call Ms Tara Lock, Co-ordinator, Lewisham breastfeeding peer support project on Tel: 07846 640781
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