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Breastfeeding event highlights how partnership working supports new mums

The event, which was held at on Tuesday 19 September at the New Town Hall in Whitechapel, focused on this year’s theme, “Everyone has a part to play in helping mums to breastfeed”.

Posted on: 28 September 2023

In recognition of National Breastfeeding Week 2023 (18-24 September), the Care Group’s Child Healthy Weight and Infant Feeding team organised an event to celebrate the fantastic work being done locally to support families around infant feeding, particularly following covid recovery.. 

The Care Group’s Hannah Spiring, Community Infant Feeding Co-ordinator, and Phoebe Kalungi, Child Healthy Weight and Infant Feeding Team Lead, delivered a presentation on the journey that the GP Care Group and Tower Hamlets infant feeding partners have taken to progress the UNICEF Baby friendly Initiative

During her presentation, Associate Director of Public Health for Children and Families (Tower Hamlets) and one of our Baby Friendly Guardians, Katie Cole, congratulated the Care Group and thanked us for our support to breastfeeding families. 

Katie reflected on how she helps to make decisions about investing money to make a difference to the families in the borough. 

Hannah Spiring, who attended the event, described the main points of Katie’s talk. She said: “Katie shared how she recently visited an exhibition at the Wellcome Trust called Milk where she learned about the contrast between how the dairy industry has convinced us that it is normal to drink cow’s milk despite the prevalence of lactose intolerance in our population, with the lesser focus being given to the promotion of breastmilk consumption by babies. She advocated that it was our role to rebalance this scale and support families in their feeding and parenting choices. 

“Katie also reported on how she has seen the difference our work has made by viewing the breastfeeding data for Tower Hamlets which is available on Fingertips.”

The event’s main speaker was Emma Pickett. Emma is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and alongside that work she supports families as a peer-supporter at her local breastfeeding groups in Haringey and has written 4 books on breastfeeding. 

Hannah said: “It was a pleasure to have Emma join us to discuss her work and how she supports mums in weaning their babies/toddlers/preschoolers from breastfeeding. 

“Emma’s talk was informative and gave us some areas to ponder on how we can support our mother’s locally around the area of stopping breastfeeding when the time is right for them.”

Watch Emma’s talk here

Attendees were able to participate in an informative Q&A and enjoyed refreshments following the talks.

Expressing her appreciation to everyone, Hannah said: “Thank you to everyone who attended and supported the event. A special thank you to those who helped make the event a success, including our fantastic 0-19 Central Admin Team (Michael, Farida and Yasmin), and Phoebe and Kam for planning the event.”