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Breastfeeding Support in Lewisham

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3222f3396f0aa4caaa43240041bb989e.jpgBreastfeeding for some women and their babies comes easily, but for others there are difficulties. Finding your way and working through the problems is not always easy. If you are finding it hard, emotionally or physically, you can visit one of Lewisham’s Baby Cafés or Breastfeeding Groups for help and support.

A Baby Café is an informal drop-in where you can meet other breastfeeding mums, get support and information and relax with your baby over a drink. Trained volunteer Peer Supporters and qualified professionals are on hand to answer any questions and give you extra support. There are also two breastfeeding groups that run during the school term time only,. both are run entirely by volunteer breastfeeding counsellors and peer supporters and also offer fantastic support.

Whether you’re pregnant, learning to breastfeed or want help with starting solids or planning your return to work you’re always welcome. For info on days, times and locations of all the breastfeeding groups please go to www.lewisham.gov.uk/breastfeeding or ask your Health Visitor or midwife.

‘The group was a great support network from the peer support workers and midwives who could offer practical advice, through to other mums who could share their own experiences and problems with breast feeding. The was invaluable to me when as a new mum I felt quite vulnerable.’ Carly, Lewisham mum

Lewisham’s Voluntary Breastfeeding Peer Supporters help at all of the breastfeeding groups and Baby Cafes. They provide information and support to parents as well as assisting 3bd3fa497b3f6d41d428196916fcd433.jpgthe group facilitators with the running of the group. Some peer supporters also volunteer on the postnatal ward at Lewisham Hospital providing information and helping mothers to get their breastfeeding off to a good start. Here in Lewisham, the NCT have trained 92 women since the project began in 2010. Plans are underway for a new course later in the year. If you’re interested in taking part and becoming a peer supporter, please contact Natalie Hickman (nataliehickman2013@gmail.com) for more information.

Breastfeeding out and about can be a daunting experience for some women. It can help to know that there are places that will welcome you if you need to feed your baby. All Lewisham libraries, leisure centres as well as lots of Lewisham Cafes, restaurants, businesses and the Lewisham Shopping Centre are part of the Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme. You can breastfeed your baby in any public place and are protected by the Equality Act, but these places are particularly welcoming to breastfeeding mums and are perfect places to feed your baby while you are out and about. For an up to date list of Breastfeeding Welcome Venues, go to www.breastfeedingwelcomescheme.org.uk

‘I always looked out for the BFW sticker. It was so reassuring to know I was in a welcoming and supportive place.’ Becky, Lewisham mum

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