Woollen boobs are appearing all over Liverpool city centre to promote breast feeding.
The 300 knitted items – used in antenatal sessions to teach mums how to latch a baby on to their breast and hand express their milk – have been made by local nans.
They are on display at more than 45 businesses including shops, restaurants and cafes across the city centre to raise awareness of Breastfeeding Awareness Week, which is taking place from 19 – 23 June.
Ten of them are ‘golden’ woollen boobs that will win their finders a special prize if they take them along at 1pm on Wednesday 21 June to Chavasse Park, at the culmination of a parade and picnic from St George’s Hall. The prize winning design to look out for has a rainbow coloured design (pictured).
The event is one of a series organised by Liverpool Bambis, a peer support group which has helped 15,000 mums in the city since 2012, working with other breastfeeding support services across Merseyside.
Although breastfeeding is on the increase in Liverpool, the city still lags behind the national average with 53 percent of new mums feeding naturally compared to 74 percent nationally, and this drops to 32 percent at six to eight weeks against 44 percent across the rest of the country.
The highlights include:
Monday 19 June – an afternoon tea party at West Derby Children’s Centre from 1:30pm – 3pm
Tuesday 20 June – a breast feeding picnic is taking place at Score Lane Park in Childwall from 1-3pm. Call 0151 233 5733 to book a place.
Wednesday 21 June – St George’s Hall will be lit up in ‘Liverpool Bambis purple’ overnight.
Thursday 22 June – a celebration lunch is happening at Fazakerley Children’s Centre from 12pm – 2pm. Call 0151 233 3705 to book a place.
Friday 23 June – celebration breakfast at Dingle Lane Children’s Centre from 9:45am – 11am including bra fitting by Marks and Spencer and an afternoon tea and massage at Walton Children’s Centre from 1-3pm.
Assistant Cabinet member for education, Councillor Rachael O’Byrne: “If new mums in Liverpool make the choice to breast feed then the support of Community Bambis is absolutely invaluable.
“Breast feeding for even a short period of time gives children the very best start in life and Wednesday’s event will be a great way for women to come together to celebrate the work of Bambis in making Liverpool a breast feeding friendly city, as well as sharing their experiences and offer support to new mums and mums-to-be who want to find out the benefits for themselves and their baby.”
Sandra Davies, Liverpool’s Director of Public Health said: “Breast milk really does give babies the best start, as it is all that’s needed for the first six months of life.
“It protects babies from infections and diseases and has many benefits for both children and mothers.”
A Breastfeeding Welcome scheme, with more than 200 places that will accommodate and welcome families in Liverpool, has been established. A list of venues, and more information about the importance of breast feeding, is available by searching on http://ehd.liverpool.gov.uk/
During Breast Feeding Awareness week the Bambis team at Liverpool Women’s Hospital will be sharing interesting facts and information on social media at www.facebook.com/liverpoolwomens and @liverpoolwomens on Twitter. Liverpool Community Bambis can be found on Facebook and are on Twitter @bambisliverpool