Friday, November 26, 2010

Suggestions for Starting a Breastfeeding Support Bag Project in Your Area

Laramie Breastfeeding Bags
ready for delivery.
We recently featured a story on the Laramie Breastfeeding Bags, a project started by one mama - Amanda Mack, after she was given a bag full of formula samples and coupons after she gave birth to her son in a hospital. Today we are sharing Amanda's tips on how to start a similar project in your community. It's easier than you might think!
1. Contact business and organizations that you know are pro-breastfeeding: I started by looking through the ads in Mothering magazine, because these are typically businesses that support breastfeeding and natural family living. I also contacted business that I had purchased products from and loved. I explained what I wanted to do and asked them for any donations they might have - samples, brochures, coupons, handouts, etc. I made a huge list of possible contacts and e-mailed them.
2. Contact businesses/organizations in your local area to ask for donations: bags, folders, supplies, copies, etc. We began by using reusuable bags from local stores because they were donated. Our budget was zero dollars and our goal was to have all information in the bags relate directly to breastfeeding and natural family living. We made sure that all donations reflected our goals and reserved the right to not include things that didn’t adhere to that goal.
3. Assembly: Once you decide the bag has a variety of necessary information and goodies, it is time to assemble a sample bag!
4. Contact your local hospital: see if there is a lactation consultant or coordinator that you could meet with. Explain the project and show the bag. Suggest that the bags are given out when the mom is discharged from the hospital. Our hospital also had to approve the bags before we began giving them out.
5. Determine numbers: find out how many births there are per month at your hospital and assemble bags accordingly. We typically try to fill two months at one time. So here at our local hospital, we have 30-40 births per month, so we try to fill 50-60 or so bags each time. We then have some time in between to contact those companies again to ask for a “refill” on donations. That way when it comes time again to fill them, our supplies are all stocked and ready to go.

If you have any questions or you need further information, please feel free to contact Amanda:

Amanda Mack: Amandamack5 {at} yahoo {dot} com
Laramie Breastfeeding Bag Project

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This post has been edited from a previous version posted at A Mother's Boutique. Our thanks to Amanda Mack - for her inspiring project and for allowing us to share it!
If you are part of an initiative to promote breastfeeding and/or the normalization of breastfeeding, tell us about it! We want to share your good work with our readers. Email us at NursingFreedom {at} Gmail {dot} com

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