World Breastfeeding Week - 2012 - Pledge now: 20 Years World Breastfeeding Week
Wellbeing Foundation WBW
Wellbeing Foundation Africa Emphasizes the Importance of Breastfeeding during World Breastfeeding Week 2012
6 AUGUST 2012 - The Wellbeing Foundation Africa is urging all nursing mothers to breastfeed infants exclusively until they are at least 6 months old, as breastfeeding is one of the most effective ways to ensure child health and survival.
While the benefits of breastfeeding infants are innumerable, only 39% of all infants under 6 months in the developing world are exclusively breastfed (UNICEF 2012). According to UNICEF nutrition indicators, the highest rates of exclusive breastfeeding are currently found in Eastern/Southern Africa (49%) and South Asia (45%), and the lowest in West/Central Africa (24%). As stated in the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health’s 2011 ‘Saving Newborn Lives’ MNCH Report, Nigeria has one of the lowest exclusive breastfeeding rates in the African continent with recent data indicating that the percentage of infants exclusively breastfed to the age of 6 months has decreased from 17% in 2003 to 13% in 2008. In addition, only 38% of Nigerian newborns are breastfed within one hour of birth (FMoH, 20). According to the Federal Ministry of Health, on a global level, non-optimal breastfeeding—especially non-exclusive breastfeeding in the first six months of life, results in 1.4 million deaths and 10% of disease burden in children younger than five years.
Through the WellBeing Foundation 24-7-365 Advocacy campaign, the Wellbeing Foundation Africa continues to emphasize the importance of breastfeeding to child health and provides breastfeeding advice in its Integrated Maternal Newborn and Child Health Personal Health Record©—a revolutionary lifesaving tool that empowers mothers and provides health workers with an accurate source of the mother’s medical history and that of her child for the first five years of life. It is the foundation’s hope that during World Breastfeeding Week, nursing mothers around the global recognize that they hold the key to improving and maintaining their infant’s health and will utilize best practice while caring for their child.
WBF Africa Integrated Maternal Newborn and Child Health Personal Health Record
The Wellbeing Foundation Africa Integrated Maternal Newborn and Child Health Personal Health Record (WBF IMNCH PHR)© is the foundation’s key strategic partnership initiative that will help meet challenges at the African MNCH frontline. Partnering with UK publishers such as Perinatal Institute, the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health, and various medical associations, the PHR© has now been utilized by mothers obtaining antenatal and delivery services at the approximately 26,000 Primary Health Centers (PHCs) in Nigeria under the National Primary Health Care Development Agency's (NPHCDA) Midwives Service Scheme (MSS). This simple but effective tool facilitates decision-making by capturing information from pregnancy to delivery, covering birth registration, immunization, health enlightenment on nutrition, and child development up to the age of 5 years. The Wellbeing Foundation Africa is currently working with Intel and the Futures Group to digitize the Personal Health Record.
About the Wellbeing Foundation Africa
The Wellbeing Foundation Africa (WBFA) is a leading frontline African Maternal Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) and empowerment organization, dedicated to transforming the lives of women and children through advocacy and action. WBFA achieves this goal by forming strategic partnerships and engaging local and international stakeholders while providing practical support interventions and tools such as the WBFA IMNCH Personal Health Record©. Committed to health, education, women’s empowerment and social welfare, WBFA, founded by Her Excellency Mrs. Toyin Saraki in 2003, promotes MNCH through the UN’s Every Woman Every Child effort, diverse multi-sector initiatives, and advocacy campaigns including WBFA 24-7-365 and the Millennium Development Goals Countdown to 2015.