Events in Southern Vermont and elsewhere supporting child health
Vermont Business Magazine As part of World Breastfeeding Week, August 1-7, the communities of Brattleboro, Springfield and White River Junction will come together to honor breastfeeding, nursing and lactation. The annual global celebration will focus on this year’s theme, “Intensify Breastfeeding – Educate and Support”, emphasizing the idea that we need to restore support systems to pre-pandemic levels and build their capacity.
The Vermont Department of Health supports and encourages breastfeeding because of its significant health benefits to both the breastfeeding person and the baby.
For adults, breastfeeding reduces the risk of breast and ovarian cancer and postpartum depression. In addition to significant nutritional and growth benefits, breastfed babies have improved cognitive development and a reduced risk of chronic disease. Breastfed babies also have a reduced risk of severe lower respiratory disease, ear infections, and sudden unexpected infant death syndrome (SUID). Breastfeeding also provides important bonding opportunities for both.
“World Breastfeeding Week is the perfect time to show people how and why breastfeeding and breastfeeding can be an easy and healthy choice,” said Deb Kitzmiller, public health nurse at the local health unit of Brattleboro. “As part of this year’s focus, we also wanted to highlight the important role Vermont employers play in supporting their breastfeeding employees.”
Vermont is a leader in breastfeeding initiation, with 91.5% of babies in the state receiving breast milk soon after birth, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, at the age of 6 months, the rate of exclusively breastfed babies drops to 36.8%. This coincides with many parents returning to the workforce – which Kitzmiller says shows how important employer support for breastfeeding-friendly policies in the workplace is for people to be able to make that choice. healthy for their babies.
“Supportive labor policies give people the time and space to continue pumping and providing breastmilk to their babies,” Kitzmiller said. “In addition to the important health aspects, becoming a breastfeeding-friendly employer also offers tangible benefits to companies.”
Data shows that policies that support new parents in the workplace can benefit employers by reducing employee turnover, increasing productivity, reducing absenteeism, improving staff morale and loyalty, as well as ‘reducing health care costs (average annual savings are $400/breastfed baby).
Employers can join in the celebration by becoming a breastfeeding-friendly employer. Visit healthvermont.gov/breastfeeding-friendly-employers to learn more about the program and how your company can apply to be designated as a breastfeeding-friendly employer.
Here’s what’s planned for World Breastfeeding Week (August 1-7):
Three “The Big Let Down” events (formerly called “The Big Latch On”)
Join us to meet other breastfeeding parents to TACKLE AND DISCOVER! Participants will be automatically entered to win prizes. Bring your questions, as lactation experts will be available.
- A virtual event on Friday, August 5 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m.
- In-person event at Lyman Point Park in White River Junction on Saturday, August 6 from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
- In-person event at Winston Prouty in Brattleboro on Sunday, August 7 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
For more information and to registergo to: https://forms.gle/tv9bnhDoh12LdkCo8
Vermont businesses are also invited to participate:
social media – The local health units of Brattleboro, Springfield and White River Junction want to feature your local business on their Facebook pages. Please send your submissions or questions to [email protected]
- Option 1 (For any business): For us to share on our social media platforms – To take a picture your break room or space where employees can pump or breastfeed. WHERE, write a few sentences on your commitment to be or become a breastfeeding friendly employer.
- Option 2 (For any business): Show the community that you are committed to having happy employees with healthy families – Use yours on social media to share a “Happy World Breastfeeding Week!” ” message.
- Variant 3 (For companies that ALREADY have “Breastfeeding-friendly employer”: Promote your lactation space and work culture the same way as option 1 above, but focus on what your BF Friendly status means to your staff! We will share this message on our social networks to highlight the work you have done!
Learn more about breastfeeding in Vermontvisit healthvermont.gov/breastfeeding
Find your local health unit: healthvermont.gov/local
About the Ministry of Health
We’ve been the state’s public health agency for more than 130 years, working every day to protect and promote the health of Vermonters.
BURLINGTON, VT – Vermont Department of Health http://healthvermont.gov