20 Actions in 20 Days
Surgeon General Regina Benjamin has called on the entire nation to take 20 concrete action steps from the January 2011 Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding to support the removal of barriers to breastfeeding. The United States Breastfeeding Committee is hosting a “20 Actions in 20 Days” campaign to highlight these action steps and implementation strategies.
Action 16. Ensure that all child care providers accommodate the needs of breastfeeding mothers and infants.
In conjunction with the Call to Action for child care providers to accommodate the needs of breastfeeding mothers and infants, the Coalition and Early Learning Coalition of Duval launched an effort to encourage eligible child care centers to seek the Breastfeeding Friendly Child Care Center designation.
Child Care centers that are part of the Child Care Food Program (CCFP) can apply for the designation. CCFP sites provide nutritious meals and snacks to children that are funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service.
To receive designation, centers must meet six standards:
- Provide an atmosphere that welcomes and promotes breastfeeding.
- Helps mothers continue to breastfeed their babies when they return to work or school.
- Have accurate written materials on breastfeeding topics available for all parents.
- Feeds infants on cue and coordinate feeding times with the mother’s normal schedule.
- Trains all center staff so they are able to support breastfeeding.
- A written policy that reflects the center’s commitment to breastfeeding.
It is a self- assessment, however the program does an annual site visit per USDA requirements and checks to verify the accuracy of the self-report.
The ELC contacted over 420 local child care providers to let them know about the designation and has a webpage specifically for interested child care providers. The Coalition also reached out to other area ELCs to inform them of the opportunity.
Resources for Child Care Centers
- Feeding infants in the Child Care Food Program, Florida Department of Health
- Is Your Site Breastfeeding Friendly — Florida Application, FDOH
- 10 Steps to Breastfeeding Friendly Child Care Centers Resource Kit, Wisconsin Division of Public Health
- How to Support a Breastfeeding Mother — A Guide fo the Childcare Center, Texas Department of State Health Services
- Child Care Tips Poster — Breastmilk, National Food Service Management Institute