Brattleboro to celebrate World Breastfeeding Week

BRATTLEBORO — As part of World Breastfeeding Week, the Brattleboro community and local businesses will host events during the first week of August with the theme to “Empower Parents, Enable Breastfeeding.”

This annual celebration of what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calls “the clinical gold standard for infant feeding and nutrition” is an invitation to learn about the importance of breastfeeding to infants' and mothers' health and to join with others in promoting this best practice.

The Vermont Department of Health's Brattleboro office encourages and supports breastfeeding because of its important health benefits for both baby and mom.

“In addition to the importance of the mother/baby bonding experience, infants who are breastfed have reduced risks of several chronic diseases,” said Deb Kitzmiller, a public health nurse with the department's Brattleboro Office of Local Health, in a news release. “Breastfeeding promotes improved immune protection and cognitive development. Studies also show that those who breastfeed have reduced risks of breast and ovarian cancers and postpartum depression.”

Kitzmiller said that getting and supporting people to breastfeed is just the start. The local health team also works with employers to create breastfeeding-friendly workplaces.

To learn more about the full range of local health services, visit

Here's what Brattleboro has planned for World Breastfeeding Week:

• The Big Latch On - Friday, Aug. 2, from 5 to 6 p.m., on the lawn of the Centre Congregational Church on Main Street (rain location inside the church). Nursing parents and their children will gather to join a worldwide count of nursing children at 5:30 p.m. Learn more at

• Photography Exhibit - During August, The Works Bakery Café gallery is hosting an exhibit featuring works by local artists Sarah Lavigne, Rachel Portesi, and Angie Roberts that engages the World Breastfeeding Week theme - “Empower Parents, Enable Breastfeeding.”

• Social Media - As part of its “Empower Parents, Enable Breastfeeding” campaign, the Brattleboro Local Health Office will share breastfeeding photos on its Facebook page, along with short stories of who or what empowered people to breastfeed. Anyone interested may also follow World Breastfeeding Week on Twitter at #WBW2019.

• The Breast of Brattleboro Award - This award will be presented to the person who best exemplifies this year's theme. Vote for your favorite breastfeeding champion by emailing [email protected].

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