New NHS Scheme Hopes To 'Normalise Breastfeeding In Bradford

The campaign asks local businesses and venues to sign up and when they do they receive a Breastfeeding Welcome pink and white sticker.

Organisations across Bradford are teaming up to encourage new mums to breastfeed here, there and everywhere.

Joining up with the national campaign, Breastfeeding Welcome, businesses and public places are coming together to help normalise breastfeeding and encourage mums to feel more comfortable doing it out and about in public.

The campaign asks local businesses and venues to sign up and when they do they receive a Breastfeeding Welcome pink and white sticker which is used as a clear message to breastfeeding mums ‘you are welcome to breastfeed your baby here.’

The national Breastfeeding Welcome scheme has been brought to Bradford jointly by Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust and Bradford Metropolitan District Council, and led by Jane Dickens, Strategic Breastfeeding Lead at Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust.

She said: “Studies show that eight out of 10 women stop breastfeeding before they want to and in Bradford less than half of babies that start life being breastfed receive none of their mums milk by two months old. One of the reasons for this is that mums feel anxious feeding out and about.

"We want to encourage all mums to feel confident that they are welcome to enjoy breastfeeding in public places, so their babies continue to receive the goodness of their mother’s milk for as long as possible.

Breast milk contains all the nutrients and fluids a baby needs up to six months of age and continues to be of great health benefit alongside food from six months. It is packed with antibodies which help keep babies better protected from some illnesses.”

First to sign up to support the campaign are the Broadway shopping centre in Bradford and the Airedale shopping centre in Keighley.

Steve Seymour, Airedale Shopping Centre Manager said: “Many of our shoppers are mums with babies and we want them to feel 100% comfortable when they visit us. As a hub of the local community, we pride ourselves on creating a relaxed and welcome environment that is inclusive to everyone.”

To coincide with maternal mental health week a launch event is taking place on 3 May at the The Broadway, Bradford.

Services that will be on hand to ask any questions include health visitors, Bradford doulas, Better Start Bradford Breastfeeding Support project, peer supporters and Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust’s specialist mother and baby service. (they run the Compassion for Mums scheme which businesses will also be asked to sign up for). 

If you would like further information about joining the scheme please contact breastfeedingwelcome@bdct.nhs.uk.

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