Bollinger Co. Health Dept. promoting 'breastfeeding friendly' bu - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Bollinger Co. Health Dept. promoting 'breastfeeding friendly' businesses


More and more moms are choosing to breastfeed, according to local health officials.

This week, moms, nurses and health departments across the country are promoting breastfeeding during World Breastfeeding Week.

In Bollinger County, locals are joining efforts in making breastfeeding more accepted.

At a breastfeeding support event on Friday, officials at the Bollinger county health department say it's a part of an effort to make the entire county more breastfeeding friendly.

“When they're hungry they're hungry,” mother of two Brandy Mayberry said.

Mayberry said planning around little Olivia's meals is next to impossible.

"If I am running through the store and she needs to eat, I can feel comfortable doing it,” Mayberry said.

She said the support she's getting from her community has made that possible.

"I don't have two worry about feeding her in the car or anything. I can be comfortable in the AC and she can be comfortable.” Mayberry said.

The health department is leading the effort in encouraging businesses to provide a breastfeeding and pumping room other than the restroom.

"Through this program, we have been able to get a grant to transform that room and make it more comfortable, get a better working fridge milk storage and just have a place to go for moms that's clean, private, secure, so they can pump and take care of their babies,” Joelle Mayfield, high-school counselor at Woodland Schools said.

Woodland Schools along with ten other local businesses and facilities have joined this effort.

"It's a natural part of life, so we make it a natural part of the library setting,” Public Library Director Eva Dunn said.

According to recent statistics, 73 percent of Bollinger County moms who participate in WIC are breastfeeding, that's higher than the state average.

"Moms that breast-feed have healthier babies, also lower their risk of cancer and other diseases as well.  And then also for the businesses, if they have a healthier employees, that's going to be less time off from work and other benefits to the company. So, breast-feeding really does benefit the whole community,” Melissa Allen, with the Bollinger County Health Department, said.

Moms say breastfeeding counseling along with support from the community makes all the difference when choosing to nurse for your child.

“There is somebody there pushing you on saying 'You can do that,'" Mayberry said.

Mayberry and officials at the health center encourage moms to contact their local health department if they have any questions or concerns about breastfeeding. Area department have similar programs available.

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