On my travels around the internet I’ve stumbled across a couple of ‘ranty’ posts about #firsthour the Save the Children campaign which promotes breastfeeding. This campaign isn’t about promoting breastfeeding over formula in the first world, where formula is affordable and clean water plentiful. Where mothers deliver their babies supported by a range of health professionals. This is about the developing world, a place where some 83,000 babies lives could be saved each year if all babies were breastfed within the first hour of life.
I’ve also read some great posts, see the bottom of the page and see right here.
Sadly, factors such as lack of access to health professionals, cultural myth and practice and the inappropriate promotion of formula mean mothers in developing countries don’t breastfeed when they could. Not can’t or won’t but could.
On Saturday the Guardian published an article about the role of Formula companies in Indonesia.
The Guardian article highlights a family who are spending half the husbands monthly income on formula. Half. Imagine the stress that puts on a family and so some families dilute the formula, causing the baby to be malnourished. Then combine diluting formula with little access to clean water and that is a recipe for a very sick baby.
Save the Children are petitioning the CEOs of Nestlé & Danone, the largest produces or formula;
“As leading baby milk formula manufacturers, you have a special responsibility. The way you market your products can influence women’s decisions to breastfeed. Despite 30 years of the WHO’s* international marketing code, there are still too many reports of it being violated. It’s time for it to stop.”
Save the Children
(*World Health Authority)