By Kiara Schott, AABN
Doula Program Director
Black Breastfeeding Week is here August 25-30. We’re celebrating all month long. It’s important for us to acknowledge that Black women breastfeed. It is important for us to talk about this, talk about the racial disparities in breastfeeding and why our numbers are lower than other groups of women. There are five main reasons why the founders of Black Breastfeeding Week created the week and those include: (1) the high Black infant mortality rate, (2) high rates of diet-related disease, (3) lack of diversity in the lactation field, (4) unique cultural barriers among Black women and (5) desert-like conditions in our communities. Despite all these challenges Black Women Breastfeed! There are a lot of Black women that are passionate about breastfeeding, and a lot of others that may be if they were given the chance and were informed. It’s important to remember when you have someone in your life that gives birth, do not ask them ‘are you breastfeeding?”
Simply taking the assumption out of how they are feeding their baby can go a long way. “How are you feeding your baby?” works wonders. Offer support, and truly mean it. If you are unable to help, let’s reach out to the passionate experts and professionals that can. Let’s keep celebrating Black Breastfeeding!