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WIC Goes Big to Increase Breastfeeding Participation and Improve Infant Health!
August is Breastfeeding Awareness Month and WIC is celebrating this important issue along with community partners at various outreach events throughout the month! WIC Staff will be at the Appalachian Mountain Community Health Centers (AMCHC) back-to-school party and wellness event on August 10th from noon to 4 p.m. at the Leicester Community Health Center, located at 711 New Leicester Highway in Asheville. Attendees can enjoy food and refreshments, face-painting and a bounce house! Community resources and partners include Eliada, WIC Buncombe County and YWCA Asheville.
As you know, breastfeeding has many benefits. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recognizes breastfeeding as the optimal nutritional source for babies and helps to prevent a range of infant illnesses and infant deaths. Breastfeeding is also optimal for mothers as it helps reduce risk for postpartum health complications and reduces incidence of breast and ovarian cancers. Furthermore, the AAP states that breastfeeding families are sick less often and the parents miss less work. There are some great alternative options that closely replicate the health benefits of breastfeeding for mothers that are unable to breastfeed, but moms who are able to breastfeed are strongly encouraged to do so.
Breastfeeding is so important to improving infant health that it is a major focus area of the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Program. The Buncombe WIC Team continues to win national awards for their outreach and ability to authentically connect with clients. WIC offers breastfeeding peer to peer counseling, breastfeeding supplies (manual or electric breast pump), and nutritious food options to support a mother’s ability to breastfeed. An average of 748 breastfeeding women and infants per month were supported to achieve their breastfeeding goals and 172 pregnant and postpartum women per month worked with the BC WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counselor Program during fiscal year 2018!
If you are interested in learning more about WIC, give us a call at (828) 250-5000 or visit us online at www.buncombecounty.org/wic.