Aug. 1-7 is World Breastfeeding Week. Around the world, millions of people will celebrate breastfeeding, participating in a wide variety of activities to protect, promote, and support breastfeeding. The theme this year is “Shared Responsibility.”
To find out what is happening in your area, visit the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action website’s pledge page – where you can also submit activities of your own.
View inspirational examples of people around the world protecting, promoting, and supporting breastfeeding
Read: 10 things anyone can do to protect, promote, and support breastfeeding
Alive & Thrive is collaborating with partners across our program areas to support the World Breastfeeding Week activities below. For more details on these activities, follow our social media accounts, where we will post updates regularly.
Experts from organizations around the world will answer any question about breastfeeding during an "Ask Me Anything" organized by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action. Go to the WABA's Facebook Page on Aug. 1 and 2 to pose your question; on Aug. 6, answers from experts will be posted. Learn more about the experts here.
Learn more about building better breastfeeding counseling programs during a 90-minute webinar being offered twice - on Aug. 3 at 14:00 UTC and Aug. 4 at 6:00 UTC - by the Global Breastfeeding Collective. The webinar will introduce new tools to support skilled breastfeeding counseling cover topics including implementation, training, the roles of midwives and nurses, emergencies, and case studies. Click here for more information and to register.
Two webinars will focus attention on the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes, in light of restrictions on movement and gatherings due to COVID-19. The events involve the Bangladesh Pediatrics Association (BPA) and the Obs/Gyn Society of Bangladesh (OGSB) and will allow for the dissemination of briefs on adherence to the country’s BMS Act. Leaders of both associations are influential advocates for breastfeeding and upholding the BMS Act. Stay tuned to Alive & Thrive’s Twitter for links to the webinars.
“Breastfeeding: A shared responsibility,” a public celebration featuring the Minister of Health and other stakeholders, will include: National launch ceremony in Plateau Central Region with the presence of the First Lady, the Ministers of Health and Trade, and the National Champion of Nutrition, awarding of the "Neema Lobo" prize for the best journalists in breastfeeding and nutrition; caravan of Journalists to make an infomercial of breastfeeding activities in Zorgho, Kaya, Boussouma, Ziniare health districts; a celebration of regional nutrition champions; and a debate with journalists regarding the theme of the 2021 WBW.
The Federal Ministry of Health and Ethiopia Food and Drug Authority is organizing a national commemoration and opening event in the presence of the State Minister of Health, Directors of Maternal and Child Health & Nutrition Directorate, the Food and Nutrition Coordination Office within the ministry, the authority’s Director and partners including Alive & Thrive. Alive & Thrive is also developing brochures and posters celebrating WBW in local Afar, Afan Oromo, Amharic and Somali languages. A high-profile press event is planned involving the Federal Ministry of Health and other partners. Journalists from state and private media, particularly those with programs on nutrition and related themes, will participate in a media sensitization and training event. Alive & Thrive will also hold an event to disseminate its BFHI assessment findings with government and partners, including Unicef and Save the Children.
Alive & Thrive is collaborating with UNICEF, the We CAN initiative, and other members of the IYCF Partners’ Alliance on "Breastfeeding is the Best Feeding," a campaign to disseminate messages to protect, promote and support breastfeeding relevant to the COVID context on social media and in person. The goal is to reach families as well as frontline providers and private sector health care practitioners.
Working with the Indian society of Perinatology and Reproductive Biology, Alive & Thrive has organized a webinar for obstetricians, neonatologists and pediatricians in the private health sector. “Protecting, Promoting and Supporting Breastfeeding: where lies the responsibility,” will take place Aug. 5.
“Shared responsibility for creating favorable framework conditions for breastfeeding in all areas of society” is the title of an event that will bring technical partners and other stakeholders together to mark WBW 2021. Organized by the Ministry of Health, the event will feature participation of the First Lady of Madagascar, Her Excellency Mialy Rajoelina, a nutrition champion.
On Aug. 4, stakeholders will launch the National Guidelines for Implementation of the Baby Friendly Initiative. The guidelines, developed through a multiple stakeholder process including Alive & Thrive, provide guidance for all hospitals in providing maternity and newborn services, and for communities and workplaces to support optimal infant breastfeeding practices.
A webinar, "Breastfeeding - A shared responsibility," will explore the protection of breastfeeding from the health system, workplace, family, and community perspectives. The event is being hosted by the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) with support from Alive & Thrive.
In Kaduna state, Alive & Thrive will engage selected social media influencers to promote breastfeeding in line with #SharedResponsibility theme through their various social media handles and platforms throughout the week.
Across the region, a variety of activities are planned to mark the annual celebration of breastfeeding. A regional TikTok dance challenge, Circle of Love, will again feature a dance compilation by “hot titoki” Quang Dang. Facebook users can participate in a regional photo challenge about the father as the companion of choice at birth. The contest will launch in Viet Nam before being replicated in other countries. A video of the campaign will be shared after it concludes.
Cambodia Cambodia’s government ministries, in collaboration with the Civil Society Alliance for Scaling Up Nutrition and other organizations, including Alive & Thrive, has organized a comprehensive online celebration with interactive activities such as games and quizzes, photo and video contest, and a reporting contest.
Indonesia The Ministry of Health, in collaboration with Alive & Thrive and partners, is conducting a series of national and inter-ministerial webinars on breastfeeding support. The topics for discussion include maternity leave and breastfeeding maintenance in the workplace, sustaining breastfeeding for mothers in COVID-19 treatment and breastfeeding support policy in Indonesia.
Myanmar A Fanpage on Facebook for the “#6la Mother’s milk is all you need” campaign will be launched to support mothers to exclusively breastfeed their infants from 0 to 6 months, the WHO recommendation. The Fanpage will provide reliable information about breastfeeding and inform mothers about proper child feeding practices through mothers' stories, quizzes and visuals.
Myanmar An online breastfeeding support community, Healthy and Happy Families, will be highlighted raise awareness of reliable nutrition counseling information and services. The community is marking WBW with a series of online events to honor the mothers' and families’ efforts to sustain breastfeeding, including engaging the public in interactive quizzes and discussions on the topic. Follow the hashtag #Whatbreastfeedingmeanstome for more.
The Philippines The Philippines celebrates its breastfeeding month, themed “Tulong-Tulong sa Pagpapasuso sa - First 1,000 Days! (Let’s help each other to support breastfeeding in the first 1,000 days!).” Throughout the celebration month in August 2021, the Department oOf Health, in collaboration with Alive & Thrive and other partners, will conduct a series of events, including technical forums and public interactive sessions. In particular, Alive & Thrive will work with the Department to produce a series of videos on breastfeeding support.
Viet Nam The one-year celebration of the Quang Ninh Human Milk Bank will look back at its achievements and positive impacts on newborn health and also serve as an opportunity to thank the mothers and staff for their contributions. The event will encourage hospitals in provinces to become Centers of Excellence for Breastfeeding and join in the initiative.
Viet Nam A technical consultation workshop will support stakeholders to develop guidance for implementing workplace lactation programs and salute the Viet Nam government’s Decree 145 regarding compulsory workplace lactation rooms among companies with more than 1,000 employees.
Viet Nam Alive & Thrive is collaborating with Betibuti, a breastfeeding community with 265,.000 members in Viet Nam, to raise awareness on companion of choice at childbirth. Promotional activities include a one-week online event, with information sharing from hospitals and nutrition experts, virtual discussions, and quizzes.
Viet Nam Alive & Thrive is collaborating with Momby, an artificial intelligence-powered mobile application, on a campaign to offer free one-on-one consultation sessions with doctors, and virtual assistance for pregnant women and new mothers affected by the lockdown during the pandemic. Alive & Thrive has provided educational content on the first 1000 days of maternity healthcare, early and essential newborn care, maternal, infant, and young child nutrition for the application.
Regional A regional webinar in the last week of August will focus on health workers and the Code and how health workers can be mobilized to protect and support the Code.
Senegal The launch of the SWBO campaign with government and other stakeholders will take place during the second week of August.
Cote d’Ivoire Ceremonies to sensitise youth, women and community leaders on the theme “Breastfeeding: a shared responsibility,” will take place in each district of the country. At the national level, the Ministry of Health and other stakeholders will participate in a public celebration.
Niger The Ministry of Health and other stakeholders will participate in “Breastfeeding: A shared responsibility,” a public celebration. The government is also planning a training on the BMS Code for members of health professionals’ associations and a national organization of midwives, complemented by workshops at the community level. The Direction of Nutrition is launching a nation-wide awareness raising campaign on breastfeeding featuring spots and sketches in several languages to be broadcast on television and radio and presented in articles in the written press. Alive & Thrive will support this celebration in district learning sites via EIBF programs.
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The status of breastfeeding has been going down in many countries. Due to the advancement of the community, more engagement of women in the official works as well as increased engagement of women even in the labour works, the breastfeeding status has been reduced. Therefore, advocacy is needed to develop/revise the policy in each country for the provision of maternity leave at least 6 months with capacity building of women and families.