Group aims to get more mothers breast feeding

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A NEW group aims to encourage more mums to breast feed in South Tyneside.

A welcome meeting was held by South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust for breast feeding peer support workers, who are aiming to help to increase breast feeding rates in South Tyneside.

A dozen local mothers successfully completed a new training course, developed by health visitor Jen Menzies, and public health midwife, Jane Harker.

Along with existing volunteers, they will now work with the trust’s community health professionals, including midwives, health visitors and the recently-established breast feeding support worker team, who run ante-natal infant feeding workshops and breast feeding support groups at children’s centres.

Derek Curry, clinical business manager for women, children and family services, said: “We are delighted to welcome the new peer support volunteers on board, and the meeting was an opportunity for them to meet our health professionals, with whom they’ll be working.

“They are an integral part of our future plans to increase initiation and continuation rates for breast feeding in South Tyneside.

“Having had positive breast feeding experiences themselves, they are ideally placed to give other mums advice, and to promote the benefits associated with breast feeding, such as reducing the risk of babies becoming ill and of later childhood disease, as well as protecting the mother’s health,” he added.