Breastfeeding Peer Counsellor Programme
Mama-2-Mama breastfeeding peer counsellors are trained to provide breastfeeding support and basic breastfeeding information to mothers. Peer counsellors have graduated from a programme based on the La Leche League New Zealand, Aotearoa, peer counsellor programme and complete up to twenty-four hours of breastfeeding education provided by two Peer Counsellor Administrators. A breastfeeding peer counsellor programme has the potential to increase the numbers of women who start breastfeeding, improve exclusivity of breastfeeding rates and improve duration of breastfeeding rates. Breastfeeding peer counsellors become advocates for breastfeeding in the community.
This increase in breastfeeding rates will reduce the infant morbidity rates, reduce the hospital admission rates and contribute positively to longer term health targets such as a reduction in obesity rates and diabetes and heart disease later in life. It will also contribute significantly to the well-being and health of mothers and afford some protection from depression, breast and ovarian cancer, heart disease and osteoporosis.
The overriding aim of training peer counsellors for breastfeeding is to build capacity within communities for women to support other women with breastfeeding. Making sure that breastfeeding knowledge is built up once again in mother / women networks is a key to breastfeeding continuance
Te Puawaitanga is interested in hearing from any wahine who are interested in doing this free training. All women with some breastfeeding experience are eligible to take part in this training. What we are really looking for is a passion and commitment to breastfeeding and a desire to pass on helpful information and give support to other breastfeeding women. A bit like Jamie Oliver’s Pass-it-On cooking initiative – providing information to one person and then they can pass it on to someone else! We also know that mothers often have better breastfeeding experiences when they are given good support from their friends.
The sessions run on a weekly basis usually from 9.45am -12.15pm and finish with a celebration graduation lunch. There are ten sessions in total.