Breastfeeding is beautiful, but it can be tough! Clogged ducts, low milk supply, mastitis and latching difficulties can all make the journey of a breastfeeding mother a challenging one. Nursing a baby is such a monumental, long-term experience and nursing moms need all the support they can find. Unfortunately, according to our 2021 State of Motherhood survey, 51% of mothers would like more acceptance and reassurance-based support overall.
For Black breastfeeding mothers, though, there are additional challenges that they may experience. These challenges are primarily due to racial discrimination, lack of support from both health care providers and the community, and generations of trauma that have contributed to lower breastfeeding rates, higher infant mortality rates, and higher rates of chronic illnesses in the Black community.
Breastfeeding support and education for Black mothers is vital in order to improve outcomes for Black mothers who choose to nurse, and to improve breastfeeding and health statistics in the community.
Here a few resources that promote, educate and empower Black breastfeeding mothers throughout their journey.
This organization is committed to improving breastfeeding rates and infant + maternal health in the Black community by providing breastfeeding support and education in the form of Community Peer Counselors, advocacy, and birth support. They also offer free doula support to birthing parents in Southeastern Wisconsin.
This Detroit-based organization is committed to eliminating the racial disparities experienced by Black breastfeeding families through advocacy, education and support for parents throughout their pregnancy and breastfeeding journey. They aim to build foundational networks of support, and strengthen systems to overcome historical, societal and social barriers to breastfeeding success.
This organization was founded to address breastfeeding disparities for communities of color. ROSE works to normalize breastfeeding by providing resources and networking opportunities for individuals and communities. As a national expert, and in partnership with communities, they build equity in maternal and child health through culturally competent training, education, advocacy, and support.
This nonprofit organization's mission is to eliminate stigma against breastfeeding in Black communities, educate Black communities about the importance of breastfeeding, educate Black families on the elements of breastfeeding, support Black breastfeeding families on their breastfeeding journeys, increase the visibility of Black breastfeeding families in our communities and improve the rates of breastfeeding in Black communities. Their Facebook page and blog share photos and stories of Black parents breastfeeding to help end the cultural stigma and show that Black women do breastfeed!
Each year for the past 8 years, this amazing organization has used 7 days at the end of August to highlight, empower and uplift the Black breastfeeding community. Black Breastfeeding Week was created because for over 40 years there has been a gaping racial disparity in breastfeeding rates. The most recent CDC data show that 75% of white women have ever breastfed versus 58.9% of black women. Through education, support, and advocacy, they hope to diminish the racial disparities experienced by Black breastfeeding parents.
This South Los Angeles-based organization aims to increase breastfeeding rates in the African American community, starting in South Los Angeles. They currently offer an online breastfeeding support group and hope to offer breastfeeding classes, support groups and in-home support along with dynamic community outreach activities in the near future.
With over 94,000 members, this Facebook group is a great resource for Black breastfeeding parents. The Breastfeeding Support Group for Black Moms offers peer-to-peer, evidence-based breastfeeding support to its members to help encourage and educate them to meet their breastfeeding goals.