UNICEF, Bayelsa State Govt Engage 40 MIYCF

Story by Ovie smith yenagoa

As part of activities to commemorate the 2023 World Breastfeeding Week, the Executive Secretary of the Bayelsa State Primary Health Care Board, Dr Appah Weri has called on stakeholders in the health sector to develop strategies that would address issues surrounding breastfeeding.

Dr Appah made the call during a one day capacity strengthening of 40 stakeholders on key messages for the establishment of Creches and Maternal Infants and Young Child Feeding in collaboration with UNICEF held in Ebiis Hotel, Etegwe, Yenagoa the Bayelsa State capital.

He emphasized the need for care givers, health officials and family members to give support to women who are breastfeeding.

” We need to talk to women, prepare them psychologically to engage in exclusive breastfeeding, also tell them about other options to get breast milk if the mother cannot breastfeed her child at that time due to various reasons”

The Executive Secretary expressed appreciation to the Bayelsa State government, UNICEF and other stakeholders for organizing the meeting as well as efforts made to increase to improve the health sector in the state.
Also speaking, State Nutrition Officer, Mr Ebi Wilson who spoke extensively on Breastfeeding emphasized the importance of the first one thousand days in the life of an infant saying, breastfeeding is one of the best sources of nutrition for young children.

” The importance of breastfeeding cannot be overemphasized, it is important to the child, mother and even the father, it also has economic importance”
He pointed out that breast milk contains lactase enzyme, water and other nutrients needed for proper growth.
He also cautioned women who are breastfeeding to eat more locally made food particularly sea foods which are very nutritious.
While delivering a presentation on Complimentary feeding, Mrs Mary Donald Ase, urged mothers to continue breastfeeding even after introducing other foods to their babies after six months.

In a goodwill message, CEO of ENWAF, Lady Eunice Nnachi encouraged women to engage in exclusive  breastfeeding for their benefit and the health of their children.
Nnachi said, “Breastfeeding is also a special and unique way to feel connected to your baby, and it increases both physical and emotional bonding.
And our young mothers should be encouraged to do the needful. “

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