‘Lactation stations’ available


Local News

June 14, 2018 - 12:27 PM

Lactation stations — privacy tents set up so young mothers can breastfeed their children at public events — are now available in the Allen County area.

Mary Daniels, a nutrition assistant with the Southwind Extension District’s SNAP-Ed program, received a grant for the small privacy tents.

The goal is to make the tents available at community events, such as the Allen County Fair, Farm-City Days or the Allen County Farmer’s Market.

“We would like to make this information known to the members of the community,” Daniels said. The privacy tents can be made available anywhere in the Southwind District Service Area, which includes all of Allen, Neosho and Bourbon counties, and in Woodson County, starting July 1.

Daniels is a part of the Southeast Kansas Breastfeeding Coalition that formed about a year ago. It was one of eight such groups to receive a total of $5,000 to acquire the lactation stations.

The coalitions espouse the benefits of breastfeeding because of the immediate nutrition and health benefits for the child and mother.

She pointed to a press release that estimated suboptimal breastfeeding rates cost the state $26 million a year in medical costs.

“Breastfeeding at the earliest stages of life has been shown to have a lifetime of positive results,” Brenda Moffitt, chair of the Kansas Breastfeeding Coalition Board of Directors, said in a press release. “Over 88 percent of families choose to breastfeed, at least at the beginning. Working with these local coalitions, we are changing the culture and building communities where families can be supported in their decision to breastfeed.”

To inquire about making lactation stations available, call the Southwind Extension office at 365-2242.