World Breastfeeding week is celebrated to
- World breastfeeding week is celebrated every year between August 1st
- 7th to encourage breastfeeding and improve the health of
- WABA (World Alliance for
Breastfeeding Action) initiated the breastfeeding week in 1992 and is now observed by WHO, UNICEF
and other organizing partners.
- The theme for this year is Sustainable
Development together - which calls for partnerships to achieve the
sustainable development goals by 2030.
breastfeeding for the first 6 months and improve the health of babies.
year, the first week of August is celebrated as the World Breastfeeding
Week. The WABA (World Alliance for
Breastfeeding Action), WHO (World Health Organization) and UNICEF (United
Nations International Children's Emergency Fund) promote and organize programs
for the entire week.
‘Sustainable development together, the theme for this year’s World Breastfeeding week focuses on partnerships with decision makers to achieve sustainable development goals by 2030.’
main objective is to emphasize the importance of exclusive breastfeeding
for the first six months after the birth of the child. Breast milk should be
the sole food for the infant and is the only suitable food enriched with all
the nutrients essential for growth.
breastfeeding week is a global vibrant movement for action to promote, protect
and support breastfeeding by anyone, anywhere and anytime. It expands and
connects the power of one with the power of many. Only by working together, we
can make the change we need", said Dr. Anwal Fazar, Chairperson, Emeritus, WABA
& Director, right Livelihood College.
How Did it Begin?
the year 1992, the WABA started the World breastfeeding week with the motive to
encourage breastfeeding in mothers and to extend support. WABA was established
February, 1992 to promote breastfeeding practices as it was
found to be diminishing in the developing world.
the other hand, the rate of diseases which affect infants were on the rise.
WABA initiated to support the global promotion of the campaign of
Health Organization and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) also urge
breastfeeding to promote the health of the baby and the mother. So WHO and WABA
joined hands to decide a day committed to breastfeeding.
Theme for 2017
year there is a theme to focus on. The events are planned with specific objectives
on the theme. This year marks the 25th
World Breastfeeding Week and is focused on Sustaining
Development Goals is a set of 17 "Global Goals" with 169 targets
between them, was framed by the United Nations with its 193 member states. World Breastfeeding Week focuses on the
Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Goals (SDGs) and Breastfeeding
- Breastfeeding is a natural way of feeding babies and is economical
than artificial feeds. It reduces the risk of poverty.
- Breastfeeding ensures that the child is exclusively fed for 6
months and along with other foods, upto two years, zeroing the impact of
health and well being
- Breastfeeding improves the health of the infant and
the mother. The chances of survival is six times more in a breastfed infant.
- Breastfeeding contributes to mental and cognitive development
and thus promote learning.
- Every child, be it boy or girl have the equal right to be
water and sanitation
- The child receives all the water a baby needs
and clean energy
- Breastfeeding reduces the need for water, firewood and
fossil fuels compared to artificial feeds.
work and economic growth
- Breastfeeding women who are supported by their
employers should cater to the needs of breastfeeding women, especially those in
innovation and infrastructure
- Most women work these days. Lactation
rooms, day care centers near the workplace and breastfeeding breaks can make a
- To reduce inequalities, the practice must be protected,
promoted and supported by all.
cities and communities
- Breastfeeding mothers and their babies need to
feel safe and welcome in all public spaces. During disaster and humanitarian
crises strike, pregnant and lactating women need particular support.
consumption and production
- Breastfeeding provides a healthy, sustainable
and natural source of nutrition for the child.
- Weather-related disasters due to global warming does not have an
impact on the infant when the child is breastfed.
- Compared to formula feeding production and distribution
breastfeeding is an insignificant contributor to water pollution.
- Breastfeeding does not put pressure on natural resources and
unlike artificial feeds which contributes to carbon emissions and climate
and justice strong institutions
- National legislation and policies should
protect and support breastfeeding mothers and babies.
Partnership for the goals
- The Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child
Feeding (GSIYCF) requires multi-sectorial collaboration. It can be done by
building upon various partnerships for support of development through
breastfeeding programs and initiatives.
order to achieve these goals, multi-level partnerships at each level is
Dr. Amal Omer-Salim, WABA's
Co-executive Director, said, "Let us work together to identify what works and
overcome common challenges. By
linking World Breastfeeding week to SDG's we can all work on ambitious goals
that have a practical effect at all levels. We can only achieve this through
sustainable partnerships. Let us come together to campaign for a generation."
By reaching out and
extending support, the campaign can bring the gradual and permanent changes in
the social living.
Mothers need timely support
and health care education soon after or even during pregnancy. This includes
education on breastfeeding also. Initiating breastfeeding is the prime decision
of the mother and requires support from the family, friends, community leaders,
trained health workers and doctors.
Why is Breastfeeding Important?
- Breastfeeding marks a good beginning for the health of the child
and has a life time impact.
- Breastfeeding is good for the mother, as well as the baby. It
reduces the risk of
breast cancer which adds $ 302 billion to the global economy
- Breastfeeding can save the lives of 800,000 children from acute
and chronic diseases every year.
- Breastfeeding reduces the chances of
diarrhea, pneumonia and asthma in children which succumbs the lives of
1.4 million children per year.
- Breastfeeding increases the chances of survival
of the infants by six times. An exclusively breastfed child is 14 times
less likely to die in its first six months than a non-breastfed child.
- World Breastfeeding Week 2017 - (http://www.thp.org/news/world-breastfeeding-week-2017-sustaining-breastfeeding-together/)
- World Breastfeeding - (http://worldbreastfeedingweek.org/)