Today marks the end of of the International breastfeeding week which commenced on the 1st of August. It is an annual event which seeks to promote breastfeeding of babies exclusively until they are 6 months old. Complimentary foods can then be introduced after the 6 month period has lapsed.
The event was organized by WABA, WHO and UNICEF. Mothers are encouraged to give their babies milk for various health benefits. These include supply of crucial nutrients to the baby, protection from deadly diseases and supply of antibodies to the baby. Breastfeeding is advsed to be done until the baby is aged 2.
The ten for this year was as formulated by WHO in patnership with UNICEF is to promote the importance of family friendly policies to enable breastfeeding and help parents bond with their children in their early life. They are also advocating for paid martenity leave to encourage mothers to take breastfeeding seriously.
Most women opt to return to work early if they are on unpaid martenity leave at the expense of their little babies. Paid martenity leave would motivate them to breastfeed for longer and establish a bond with their little ones.