Breastfeed Chicago is a parent-powered organization established in 2011 to support parents who breastfeed. We work to build a cohesive and sustainable support network for breastfeeding parents through the connection of resources, cultural normalization, and institutional advocacy.
In 2017, Breastfeed Chicago has grown our number of staff and volunteers, worked to build new partnerships with nonprofits and public health agencies, and created new connections with breastfeeding-friendly companies that support breastfeeding in Chicago.
“This has been an exciting and successful year for us,” said Katrina Pavlik, founder and Board Chair of Breastfeed Chicago, “and 2017 isn’t over yet!”
Staff and Volunteers
This year brought the creation of two new staff positions in the organization, and our new staff carry out social media outreach and community engagement. “These new positions help Breastfeed Chicago to connect with even more parents to tell their stories. They help make our presence known throughout Chicagoland,” Pavlik said.
The organization is proudly supporting 29,000 breastfeeding parents online through the Breastfeed Chicago Facebook support group, and we do this with 24 dedicated moderators who approve posts and share information with parents to help them reach their breastfeeding goals.
Expanding Community Partnerships
Breastfeed Chicago developed an exciting new connection with the Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago’s Children (CLOCC) in 2017! Working together, we trained 8 home visitors working at Children’s Home + Aid to help parents initiate breastfeeding and reach their breastfeeding goals with in-home support.
“At CLOCC we focus a lot of our work around policy, systems, and environmental change and have had a lot of success contributing to breastfeeding changes at the organizational level,” said Katelyn Kanwischer, Early Childhood Program Manager at CLOCC. “We felt it was important to partner with Breastfeed Chicago to expand that success into the community level. With our combined expertise in different areas, we were able to expand our reach towards the same goal,” Kanwischer said.
Through another creative partnership, the University of Chicago Medicine’s (UCM) Baby Bistro breastfeeding support group will now be able to offer additional information, parking, and transportation resources to breastfeeding parents! My Mobile Mom helps companies and individuals create pumping stations, and their generosity helped create new opportunities for breastfeeding parents to access support.
“This generous donation to the UCM Baby Bistro will help us provide needed educational materials, breastfeeding and positioning aids in our weekly breastfeeding support group,” said Julie Lester, registered nurse and international board certified lactation consultant at University of Chicago Medicine. “This partnership and support is invaluable to the breastfeeding success of many mothers and babies,” Lester said.
You Can Help
With the continued support of individuals, partners, and businesses throughout Chicago, Breastfeed Chicago will move forward building a truly breastfeeding-friendly Chicago. We envision a Chicago where all parents know the benefits of breastfeeding and get the support they need to successfully breastfeed their children for as long as they want to. We do this by connecting people with the information and resources they need, by advocating for breastfeeding-friendly practices by businesses, employers, hospitals and health care providers, and by using our influence as breastfeeding parents to normalize breastfeeding in our communities.
Donate now to show your support!