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Week will highlight the benefits of breastfeeding
NATIONAL Breastfeeding Week is the perfect opportunity to celebrate the natural and best way of feeding your child.
The week-long awareness campaign, which started yesterday, has the full-backing of the York-based Treasure Chest group, which advocates breastfeeding as the only way to get children off to the best start in life.
To mark the occasion the group is holding a day of family activities at a fundraising event on Friday.
Chairwoman Nicola Clements, a mum of two, said: “The goal of the event is to give families a comfortable place to have fun with their children and the chance find out more about the work of Treasure Chest.
“Breastfeeding information will be available at the event, but everyone is welcome.
“This event aims to raise funds so we can train more peer supporters to deliver this very important service.
“We’ll be selling tea, coffee and delicious cakes, as well as hosting a raffle with some fantastic prizes.”
Treasure Chest works at a number of locations across the city, including the hospital’s postnatal ward, to support mothers with breastfeeding and provide information about everything from expressing to introducing solids.
To do this, the group relies on a network of peer supporters who volunteer their time to help other parents give their child a great start in life.
One such volunteer, Karen Wregglesworth, said: “Much has been written and talked about recently regarding breastfeeding, not least the extended breastfeeding debate, and breastfeeding in general is always a subject guaranteed to cause much discussion.
“It is with all this in mind that National Breastfeeding week is a perfect opportunity to celebrate what is the natural and very best way of feeding your child, whilst also raising awareness of a subject that is in fact, still widely misunderstood.”
She said: “National breastfeeding week gives the many local support groups around the country, such as Treasure Chest in York, the opportunity to really make people aware of their presence and the fact that there is help available out there from a team of dedicated, fully-trained individuals, who work voluntarily to promote breastfeeding and its benefits to every corner of the community.
“Breastmilk is instantly available whenever your child requires it and ultimately it is free. It seems senseless therefore to pay for an inferior product that can come nowhere close to something every mother produces naturally.
“Apart from the obvious benefits to the baby, there are also benefits to the mother, whose risks of ovarian and breast cancer in later life are significantly reduced. Adults who were breastfed as babies commonly benefit from lower blood pressure, cholesterol and lower rates of obesity and type 2 diabetes.
“Evidence has also shown that people who were breastfed perform better in intelligence tests.”
She said: “The facts speak for themselves and although its not always easy – what in life that is really worth having ever is? What price the health of your child?”
• The family event on Friday takes place at from 2pm until 4pm in the Friends Meeting House in Friargate, York.
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