In observing World Breastfeeding Week the Inkatha Freedom Party stresses the important health benefits related to breastfeeding.
“Breastfeeding is the first preventive health measure that can be given to a child at birth. It is nature’s first immunisation enabling the infant to fight potential serious infection.
This encouraging trend can be attributed to the concerted efforts of relevant stakeholders and parties, working in collaboration to implement the multi-pronged strategies to strengthen the support in healthcare facilities, encourage the adoption of breastfeeding-friendly workplace policies and promote breastfeeding-friendly premises. A major concern for working mothers is the lack of sufficient baby care facilities in public premises and lactation rooms at workplaces.
Employers should also provide women with break time and private space to breastfeed,” said IFP KZN Provincial Spokesperson on Health, Mrs Ncamisile Nkwanyana MPL.
“Breastfeeding is a personal choice, but it is important for mothers of new born babies to be made aware of the long-term health benefits for babies. Returning our communities to a breastfeeding supportive culture will require co-operation from family, friends, employers, educational institutions, hospitals and businesses.
Secondary schools should also teach pupils about the importance of breastfeeding. We are calling for schools to include breastfeeding as part of compulsory personal, social and health education lessons,” continued Mrs Nkwanyana.
“Regrettably the attitudes of a large part of society shows that breastfeeding is not always encouraged. Local support is patchy, advice is not always consistent and often overly dogmatic, support in the workplace is not always conducive to continued breastfeeding and perhaps most worryingly breastfeeding in public is still often stigmatised.
The IFP believes that social media can also provide support to breastfeeding mothers through Facebook and Twitter. Breastfeeding mothers can reach out through groups and chatrooms and get the support they need to feel normal in a formula-feeding culture,” concluded Mrs Nkwanyana.
Mrs Ncamisile Nkwanyana
IFP KZN Provincial Spokesperson on Health
078 302 3991