By Benjamin Flowers, Staff Reporter
Belize joined with over 175 countries all over the world this week to celebrate World Breast Feeding Day.
To culminate a week’s worth of awareness activities on the importance of breast feeding, the Collet Education and Resource Center organized a workshop at the Radisson Fort George Hotel.
The workshop entitled “Breastfeeding and Work; Let’s Make it Work”, was designed to sensitize the managers of work places about the importance of creating an environment within the work place that is conducive to breastfeeding.
Organizations such as the Belize Cancer Society, the Ministry of Health, the Labour Department, the office of the Special Envoy for Women and Children, and the Ministry of Human Development attended the session.
The workshop also had guest speakers from entities like the United Nations Development Project (UNDP), the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), and the Institute of Nutrition for Central America and Panama (INCAP).
Immigration, Labour, Local Government and Rural Development Minister Godwin Hulse, said that while economic realities prohibit workplaces from making accommodations for mothers to breastfeed, his ministry is working on legislation to encourage and support employers in achieving that objective.
World Breast Feeding Day was first celebrated in 1992 – the product of the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA). The 2015 theme focusing on breastfeeding and work is the follow-up to the 1993 Mother-friendly Workspace initiative.
Physicians the world over agree that breastfeeding six months after birth is essential to the healthy growth and development of a child. Many organizations in Belize such as the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital and the Belize Family Life Association (BFLA) provide year round advocacy, information and support services for breast feeding.