SurfAid Celebrates World Breastfeeding Week

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Photo By Rahmania

Saving babies begins with breastmilk. In the first few months of life, breastfed babies are six times more likely to survive than children who are not breastfed. Despite this statistic, globally, only 36% of infants under six months are exclusively breastfed.

August 1st - 7th is World Breastfeeding Week, an international celebration aiming to re-establish a global breastfeeding culture and provide support for exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life everywhere.

Exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life yields tremendous health benefits for both infants and mothers. Breastmilk provides energy and essential nutrients and supports a strong immune system for infants. Exclusive breastfeeding is also an integral part of the reproductive process for mothers. 

In Indonesia, the uptake of exclusive breastfeeding is a continual struggle because of a poor understanding of nutrition, commercial pressure on mothers to buy formula, and a lack of support for breastfeeding in the workplace. While not easy, SurfAid’s exclusive breastfeeding campaigns are working, because of people like Janiba, a mother from one of our communities who sadly had two babies die. The loss of her children prompted Janiba to visit SurfAid’s community health post during her most recent pregnancy.

“I went to Posyandu (community health post) regularly for checkups to learn about the development of my baby. I also learned a lot about breastfeeding and how to take care of my newborn baby.”
In January of this year, Janiba gave birth to a beautiful baby. Assisted by a SurfAid-trained community health volunteer and midwife, she successfully began breastfeeding her baby in the first hour of life.
“It was a great decision to initiate breastfeeding early with my newborn baby. I produce a lot of breastmilk in comparison to my previous experiences with my other children. I did not know about early initiation of breastfeeding before, so I did not give it to my other children.”
Breastfeeding is a simple and effective lifesaving tool, and it is free! Through education, mothers are empowered to make positive changes that support the health of their families.
Join SurfAid as we bring simple education and support to mums like Janiba to prevent unnecessary infant death and ensure all babies grow up healthy and strong.