This week is Breastfeeding Celebration Week, and over the last eight months I’ve loved meeting other new mums across the city at various groups and meetups, and sharing in the journey of new motherhood. 

One story that really hit home for me was that of Mandy Chapman, a health improvement practitioner at Livewell Southwest who has trained more than 400 women across Plymouth to become breastfeeding peer supporters

These women in turn have helped thousands of new mums to breastfeed, many of whom felt daunted by the prospect of breastfeeding their new baby.

The peer supporters training programme run by Livewell Southwest is a 10 week course for supporters to be trained in helping new mums to feed their babies, as well as to give support and encouragement and be welcoming and respectful to new mums and babies, as well as dads.

Mandy said the programme was all about providing a support network for new mums so they could feel confident in feeding their babies.

“A lot of new mums want to breastfeed but are worried about where to start,” she said. “Trying to breastfeed in hospital can feel quite daunting for many reasons. Being able to talk mum-to-mum, or to a peer supporter and have that support from women who have been through the same thing can make a real difference.”

You can find out more about Mandy’ story here, and I would also like to urge businesses across the city to get on board with Plymouth Latch On’s Breastfeeding Welcome Kite mark scheme so they too can show support for breastfeeding mums and provide a safe and welcoming place for new Mum’s to feed their babies the way they want to.