Returning to Work whilst Breastfeeding

Volunteers with Charnwood BRAS, the breastfeeding support service, were surprised to find mums coming to the Breastfeeding cafes with a new concern. Many of the ladies were really pleased with how well breastfeeding had worked for them, it was cheap, convenient and healthy so they were getting quite distressed at the thought of having to stop breastfeeding to return to work. Volunteer, Liz Blackshaw explains, “Mums didn’t want to stop doing something that worked well for them and were also concerned about practical aspects such as how to get a breastfed baby to take a bottle.
Returning to work can be a very stressful time for mums, we wanted to be able to support them and help them with their practical concerns.” Angie Bell, Health visitor said, “Mums often don’t realise that it is possible to carry on breastfeeding when you return to work, the two things are compatible!” So Charnwood BRAS now runs a ‘Returning to Work’ workshop for mums, in addition to their popular antenatal course. The workshop looks at how breastfeeding is supported by Health and Safety and Employment law, it also looks at practical issues like expressing and transporting breastmilk as well as how to safely reduce or stop breastfeeding and gives tips on how to help baby and mum adapt to the new situation.
Volunteer Liz said “I think we are quite candid about the advantages and disadvantages of both breastfeeding and bottle feeding for working parents. Our main aim is to provide information and help mum feel more comfortable about returning to work”. Susan Forester has already been to one of the workshops before she returned to work at Loughborough University. She said, “It was really empowering to hear how breastfeeding is protected by law. The practical stuff was extremely useful too. It gave me a lot to think about and I’m really pleased I can carry on breastfeeding with confidence”.
The next workshop is on Wednesday 9th May, 10.00am until midday at Mountsorrel Children’s Centre. The sessions run every two months and are free to attend. To book a place please call the Charnwood BRAS on 07583 041054.
The Charnwood BRAS provides information, reassurance and support to parents and parents-to-be at every stage from pregnancy to weaning, through one-to-one support, a telephone helpline, breastfeeding cafes and antenatal workshops. The volunteers believe that with the right support breastfeeding success can be achieved for almost all mums and babies, with wonderful benefits for both. For more information about the workshops or the Charnwood BRAS in general, please see www.charnwoodbras.co.uk