Let’s Support and Promote Breastfeeding

In the end, breastfeeding is best for baby and Mommy.

Breastfeeding may be considered a challenging phase of motherhood but the physical, mental, and emotional benefits of breastfeeding for mothers and babies truly make the journey worthwhile. While more and more mothers recognize that breastmilk will always be superior compared to formula milk, there is still a need to spread awareness on its benefits and to encourage people to support breastfeeding.

in response to the global campaign of protecting, promoting, and supporting breastfeeding, World Vision Development Foundation, in partnership with the Department of Health, launched Mother-Baby Friendly Philippines. This two-year project aims to:

1. Support and strengthen the implementation of Executive Order 51 (The Philippine Milk Code of 1986), Republic Act 7600 (The Rooming-ln and Breastfeeding Act of 1992), and Republic Act 10028 (The Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act of 2009)

2. Increase awareness and educate health professionals and the public regarding these laws

3. Encourage people to promote, protect, and support breastfeeding by involving them in monitoring the implementation of breastfeeding laws in the country

Carleneth F. San Valentin, Health and Nutrition Technical Programme Manager of World Vision Development Foundation, beIieves that encouraging mothers to nurture their child is a way to empower a mother’s ability to breastfeed and care for their child. ”We are here to educate mothers so that they are empowered to make the right choice in nurturing and caring for their child. We want them to realize that if these laws are not implemented, we are impinging on their rights and of their child‘s,” she shared.

According to Dr. Anthony P. Calibo of the Department of Health, this responsibility to uphold the breastfeeding rights of mothers is not just the responsibility of concerned organizations and government sectors; it is a responsibility of the general public. ”If a mother is investing herself for the betterment of the future of her child, then she is also investing in the betterment of the future of this country,” he emphasized.

To stay true to their mission and vision for this project, the team conducted Mommy Forum: Mother~Baby Friendly Philippines last October 2, 2018 at Little Owl in New Manila. #MBFPH was graced by mom celebrities like Camille Prats Yambao, Jennica Garcia Uytingco and Erika Padilla.

Erika Padilla, World Vision Breastfeeding Ambassador, shared her breastfeeding journey. “It is a huge sacrifice. it is difficult, painful, and a lot of work. But definitely worth every single drop because I see my son getting stronger and healthier every day,” she recalled. Her story encouraged more moms to share and ask for more tips from Erika as well.

Rommel Fuerte, Executive Director of World Vision Development Foundation, reminds long-time moms and new moms the reason behind this gathering: the breastfeeding normalization is still a work in progress and it’s a must to constantly promote and protect breastfeeding to empower moms and to ensure a healthy start for their children.

To know how you can support Mother-Baby Friendly Phllipplnes, log on to http://mbfps.doh.gov.ph/ or dowload MBF PH via Google Play or Apple Store.

Good Bye to September

There’s no stopping time.

We’re now saying good bye to September and hello to October. And we know, of course, that pretty soon we’ll be saying hello to December and the Christmas season soon.

The month of September was kind of bittersweet for me.

I learned that two of my friends passed away due to cancer. Knowing about their deaths reminded me of how life had been when I was still based in Cebu where these friendships were born. But such is life, such is time. We can not hold it, control it. It only ultimately belongs to our Creator (Psalm 31:15). We grieve the loss but the reality also reminds us of the brevity of life. And how we need to be living purposeful lives on this earth.

September also marks the birthday month of my husband Daryl as well as several family members (my brother, sister-in-law, aunt and several cousins) as well as friends. My husband received several cakes (!!) for his birthday 🙂 This year, he was actually in Surigao a good part of his birthday (he came home just before evening) for a training event with the Agusan High National High School Science Department where he currently serves as OIC Department Head.

Birthdays remind me that life is to be celebrated and lived well and yes, lived with purpose.

This month, I also had the opportunity to be  one of the speakers for a seminar on Capability Building for ABSNET Members on Psychological Intervention. I spoke about Caring for Carers, drawing from my academic training in Psychology and my hands-on experience in the past in Cebu and Thailand where I directly worked with street kids and kids/youth in the slums. Venue for  the seminar was at the Watergate Hotel in Butuan City.

And so I say good bye to September, hoarding the new experiences and insights gained along with a thankful heart and a resolution to continue pursuing a purposeful life. May you pursue such a life, too.