Mothers front up for breastfeeding

It was clear that breast is best when 29 babies and toddlers "latched on" to celebrate a growing international movement.

One of the many Big Latch On events was held yesterday at Nelson's Victory Community Centre as part of World Breast Feeding Week.

The first Big Latch On was held in New Zealand in 2005 by the Women's Health Action Trust. Last year the event spread to five countries involving 5687 women, and that has jumped to 22 this year.

The purpose of the Big Latch On is to normalise breastfeeding in every culture. Lactation consultant Ruth Brodbeck said it was a good turnout in Nelson, with 28 mothers and 29 toddlers and babies latching on.

"All the mums were really pleased with the morning. There was great support there."

The recommendation from the World Health Organisation was for mothers to exclusively breastfeed babies for the first six months, Ms Brodbeck said.

Mother and facilitator of Mum2Mum breastfeeding support group Tara Hope said it was great to see some first-time mothers and for everyone to know they weren't the only ones out there feeding.

"It's a chance to talk through any questions or problems people are having."

Nelson people in general were accepting of public breastfeeding, she said.

There were four Latch On events in the Nelson region, one in Nelson city, two in Motueka and one in Takaka.

The Nelson Mail