A Maple Ridge mother is attending the community’s annual Breastfeeding Celebration at the public library to raise awareness about it’s importance after she was forced to rely on donated breast milk to feed her new born.
Brittany Udot, 29, will be attending the 15th annual celebration on Saturday with her two daughters, Oaklyn, 2, and Emlyn, four months.
Udot was diagnosed with pre-eclampsia before she was full term during her pregnancy with Oaklyn, a condition that can pose a threat to both the baby and the mother, resulting in surgery.
“I had a C-section, so that sometimes, I’ve heard, can delay [the breast milk],” she said. “So I was just really thankful that [breast milk] was available at Ridge Meadows hospital… I was really happy that we got to do that for [Oaklyn].”
The event is open to everyone and will run from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. There will be entertainment for children, door prizes and “swag bags.”
Each year mother’s participating try to set a new record for the number of children breastfeeding simultaneously at one site. Those wishing to participate in the “Latch-on” should be ready to join by 12 p.m.
Dorina Messer, a nurse at the Maple Ridge Public Health unit, said breastfeeding can be challenging at first, but like any skill, requires practice.
“Human milk provides all the nutrition your baby needs,” said Messer. “It also carries antibodies that will help to protect your baby from infections and diseases.”
Additional resources and support about breastfeeding can be found online on the Fraser Health website.
Udot said she has been participating in the annual event to raise awareness and to give back.
“I felt that I wanted to give back, and so for the first six months I really wanted to do as much as I could to help, by donating back the breast milk I had used for the first few days at the hospital,” said Udot.
Udot said she currently has a supply of milk frozen at home and will be donating again.
“Any amount really helps,” she said.
For more information about donating breast milk visit the BC Women’s Provincial Milk Bank website.