World Breast Feeding Week 2009 Observed from1st-7th August

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The World Breast Feeding Week is observed this year from August1st to August,7th.The theme for the 18th Annual World Breast-feeding Week (WBW) celebration is “Breast-feeding: A Vital Emergency Response Are you ready?” This year’s theme emphasizes the need to consider breast-feeding as a life saving intervention before and during emergencies.

The World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) was formed in 1991 to act on the Innocenti Declaration (1990) to protect, promote and support breastfeeding. As part of its action plan to facilitate and strengthen social mobilisation for breastfeeding.

This has become to be known as World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) celebrated every 1-7 August to commemorate the Innocenti Declaration. World Breastfeeding Week was first celebrated in 1992. Now it involves over 120 countries and is endorsed by UNICEF, WHO and FAO

World BreastFeeding Week 2009 Objectives
  • To draw attention to the vital role that breastfeeding plays in emergencies worldwide.
  • To stress the need for active protection and support of breastfeeding before and during emergencies.
  • To inform mothers, breastfeeding advocates, communities, health professionals, governments, aid agencies, donors, and the media on how they can actively support breastfeeding before and during an emergency.
  • To mobilize action and nurture networking and collaboration between those with breastfeeding skills and those involved in emergency response.
Babies, who are breastfed have a secure and safe food supply, they are not exposed to disease-causing bacteria and parasites that can contaminate water supplies, and they receive antibodies and other disease fighting factors that help prevent illness.

Children are the most vulnerable in emergencies – child mortality can soar from 2 to 70 times higher than average due to diarrhoea, respiratory illness and malnutrition.

Breastfeeding is a life saving intervention and protection is greatest for the youngest infants. Even in non-emergency settings, non-breastfed babies under 2 months of age are six times more likely to die.


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