Support to breastfeeding mothers and babies

On March 22nd, a breastfeeding educational session for young refugee mothers took place in a hotel in Asprovalta, organized by WAHA International – ASB’s implementing partner, and funded by European Commission (ECHO).

Breastfeeding is a natural process of motherhood and most women are able to breastfeed, if they are provided with the information and brief education about it, especially in the critical living conditions that refugees are in. That is why Dr Sahar, WAHA medical coordinator for Greece visited Thessaloniki and held several educational sessions.

At the session in Asprovalta, 12 Syrian women were present, 10 young mothers, out of few had problems with breastfeeding, and 2 pregnant women. Even that the subject is well known, women showed a lot of interest and curiosity, as they were asking questions and additional explanations.

In a pleasant environment, with fresh juices and refreshments, Dr Sahar held the lecture and the simulations, in order to show the right technique of breastfeeding in practice. Cards with photos were distributed, and proved to be helpful.

Some of the important point raised:

  • The importance of right nutrition for pregnant and breastfeeding women and of taking supplements for iron and folic acid even 3 months after the delivery of the baby.
  • The importance of breastfeeding for the optimal baby growth taking into consideration that in first 6 months of their lives, babies need ONLY breast milk.
  • The importance to follow baby’s growth in the first months with the present medical actor.
  • The composition of breast milk, explanation on why it has such high nutritional value.
  • Good supply of breast milk depends on the frequency of breastfeeding and the right position that can help to ensure that baby suckles well and helps to increase the production of milk. Also, the affective attachment of mother with the baby and the skin to skin contact help produce enough milk.
  • Psychological benefits for mother and baby.
  • Prevention of common clinical situations, especially the insufficient milk production.
  • Necessity of the proper education and help to mother to establish the breastfeeding in the beginning. Possible need for collaboration among medical NGOs in order to ensure the effective help.

“This document covers humanitarian aid activities implemented with the financial assistance of the European Union. The views expressed herein should not be taken, in any way, to reflect the official opinion of the European Union, and the European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.”