New Internet portal on breastfeeding
In time for this year's World Breastfeeding Week from 29 September to 5 October 2003 the National Breastfeeding Committee within BfR and the Deutsche Liga für das Kind open a new Internet portal on the subject of breastfeeding on 2 October 2003 under www.stillen-info.de. It is to facilitate the access of women, mothers and families seeking help and advice to factually correct information on breastfeeding and also offer concrete help in individual cases.
Every year World Breastfeeding Week is staged in the first week of October. This year's motto is "Breastfeeding in a globalised world - for peace and justice". These are big words for so private an activity as breastfeeding. However, peace and justice always begin with the individual and in the family and certainly have to do with the special attention which the breastfed child receives. It is a matter of justice that all children receive the best possible food and for infants that means breast milk. Hence the promotion, protection and support of breastfeeding, something that WHO has demanded for years, is a task which is incumbent upon everyone, politicians, health care employees and the entire population.
The vast majority of mothers in Germany want to breastfeed. Nevertheless, many mothers still stop breastfeeding sooner than they actually want to. One reason is that they can find no assistance when they encounter difficulties with breastfeeding. Other reasons are the strain imposed by work and family, lack of acceptance in their environment and no active support. In order to remedy this situation, there is a need for ongoing joint efforts by doctors, care staff in the clinic and post-natal facilities right down to employers.
The new Internet portal would like to participate in these efforts. It lists organisations and associations of midwives, breastfeeding and lactation advisors and self-help groups together with details of their names, addresses, telephone and fax numbers, e-mail and Internet details. This means that users can source help close to where they live. Doctors are also invited to use this facility in order to give their patients experiencing breastfeeding difficulties if necessary the names of local help and advisory services. To facilitate orientation, details are provided of the expert or professional background of the individual institutions and whether and, if so, what costs are charged for their assistance.
In Germany the information offering on breastfeeding is indeed sufficient and very diverse. However, the individual information content varies in quality. The organisations and associations listed on the new Internet site guarantee the reliability of the books and brochures published by them.
The Deutsche Liga für das Kind and the National Breastfeeding Commission hope that the Internet site will be well used. The National Breastfeeding Commission and its recommendations can be downloaded from the Internet on www.bfr.bund.de/cms/detail.php?id=425
Contact details of the National Breastfeeding Commission:
Tel.: +49-(0)30 1 8412-3491
Fax: +49-(0)30 1 8412-3715