The first six months of life are critical for child health and development. Breastmilk provides all the nutrients infants need during this period, supporting brain development and reducing the risk of infection and malnutrition. When mothers are not able to provide their babies with their own breastmilk, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends providing donor human milk as the next best option. Human milk banks (HMBs) provide safe, high-quality donor milk to infants who need it most. A supportive breastfeeding environment is crucial to the success of an HMB. This includes an ample pool of breastmilk donors, and necessitates broad social endorsement.
This brief highlights the work of A&T in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region in supporting the establishment of HMBs in Viet Nam.