Published: Tuesday, 11 August 2015 11:41
Sierra Leone, 1-7 August, 2015 – The Health and Nutrition Civil Society platform, in collaboration with Kombra Media Network supported government in celebrating World Breastfeeding Week. Starting on Saturday 7th August 2015, civil society, community based organisations and religious leaders came together with media partners to air a series of radio programmes on breastfeeding across the country.
Focusing on the theme “Breastfeeding and Work-Let’s make it work”, civil society advocated to government to increase maternity leave days and enforce policy to ensure that employers support working mothers through the provision of adequate leave allowance and benefits as well as provide flexible options. They also pleaded with employers to create an enabling working environment for working mothers in order that mothers can continue to breastfeed their children for up to six months.
As part of the week-long celebration, National Coordinator for the civil society platform, Ms. Ramatu Jalloh conducted a series of radio interviews and phone in programmes, where she called upon government to review the current leave allowance of 84 days (up to three months) as this would be in line with government commitment to improving the health and development status of children under the age of two. She also called on fathers and other family members to support mothers to breastfeed up to six months as exclusive breastfeeding has been found to help infants withstand infections and provide critical nutrients for early development.