*celebrates 2022 International breastfeeding week
By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Imo State Çhairperson of the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, (NAWOJ), Dr. Dorathy Nnaji on Friday, tasked nursing mothers to focus more on breast feeding of their babies
The NAWOJ Chairperson gave the charge while speaking at the 2022 International Breastfeeding week by the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, NAWOJ, Imo state chapter held at the Owerri Municipal council, headquarter,
Dr. (Mrs) Nnaji maintained that the importance of breastfeeding to the physical, mental and emotional health of women and their children cannot be quantified.
” Breast milk is something you can not find in the market, it is nature’s gift, very healthy, nutritious, and free. Both the baby and the mother stand to benefit from breast feeding because it helps the womb to contract and return to its original shape in the course of breastfeeding”, she said
The NAWOJ Çhairperson added, ” it helps to reduce the risk of breast or uterine cancer, among other benefits.”
She advised nursing mothers to ensure that they breastfeed their babies because of the many mutual benefits both mother and child can get from breastfeeding, which includes being economical, helps in emotional bonding, enhances brain development, strengthens immunity, and natural intelligence of the child.
On the 2022 International Breastfeeding week, Dr. Dorathy Nnaji, stressed that the celebration was aimed at creating awareness and sensitisation of breastfeeding and ensure that babies well-being is preserved.
According to the Imo NAWOJ Çhairperson, the event is annually commemorated every first week of August , from the 1st to 7th, as directed by the World Health Organization in the year 1992 and has since then been observed in many countries all over the world.
One of the Resource Persons at the programme, Assistant Chief Nursing Officer Charity Chilaka in her presentation lectured women on the benefits and importance of breastfeeding to them, their children, husbands and society.
She maintained that the increasing rise in drug addiction and crime among the youths was due to lack of or inadequate breastfeeding by mothers and that adequate breastfeeding will reduce problem of juvenile delinquency in the society.
Mrs Chilaka then tasked mothers to do exclusive breastfeeding of their enfants for the huge benefits they are bound to reap, such as the colostrum which is the first yellowish liquid that flows from the breast immediately after delivery that the baby sucks, strengthens its immunity and gives protection from diseases like diarrhea, sharpens the child’s intelligence and mental health.
The resource person stressed that exclusive breastfeeding which means feeding a baby with only breast milk for the first 6months of life , was the right of a child.
Also, a nursing mother who participated in the programme, Mrs Annabel Chilaka, expressed excitement that this was the first time she was participating in such an event, and thanked NAWOJ for organizing it for them.
Nursing mothers and their babies from across the city participated in the event where women were given lectures on the benefits of breastfeeding to them and their children, and to the society at large.
Highpoint of the programme was the distribution of gifts such as diapers, toys, feeding bottles , to the babies of the mothers who attended the event by Imo NAWOJ chairman.