Iloilo councilor says breastfeeding was difficult

The short documentary “Unang Yakap” shows a child being born inside a hospital delivery room. The attending nurses cut the umbilical cord, clean and dry baby, wrap him in a blanket and place him on top of his mother’s chest.
The mother’s hand gently moves to the baby’s back to reciprocate their “unang yakap” or first hug.
The baby, by instinct, moves his mouth to his mother’s nipples and started suckling.
The clip aims to educate Ilonggos about the following: (1) The cutting, drying and bringing to the mother is part of a Department of Health administrative order to ensure that the baby is fed within one hour after birth as studies show that it has an effect on the child’s health and ability to survive (2) The mother’s warm protects the baby from hypothermia and (3) Breastfeeding should be given to children 0 months to six months, exclusively (meaning, no other beverages) in order for the mother and child to enjoy several benefits.
For the baby: Increased resistance against diseases and intelligence. For the mom: tightening of the uterus, weight loss, prevention of postpartum depression. For both: Stronger bond.
This was stressed during a program at SM City Iloilo celebrating Breastfeeding Month.
To note, SM pioneered having a breastfeeding station for women on the go who want to feed their children in the mall.
Councilor Lee Zulueta-Salazar, who was a guest in the event, narrated that being a working mother who breastfeeds a baby is difficult, thus having a breastfeeding station was a gift for her.
Engr. Gilbert Domingo, asst. mall manager, revealed that SM Malls’ breastfeeding station project started in March 2006 with SM City Megamall.
“Seven years later, we have 45 breastfeeding stations that have been visited by more than 250,000 nursing mothers, not including mothers who chose to breastfeed in the different areas of the mall,” he said.
“While we provide a breastfeeding station for their privacy and convenience, we allow breastfeeding anywhere in the mall,” he added.
He said this initiative earned recognitions from the UNICEF, World Health Organization, Department of Health, and International Labor Organization.
“We would like to cite our SM Naga Breastfeeding Station that had been visited by different representatives of the UNICEF and UNMDG for being a model in the implementation of the breastfeeding station in an established for the region. Incidentally, our malls in China already have breastfeeding stations as well,” Domingo said.
The event was attended by health coordinators from the different districts of Iloilo City and female employees of SM City Iloilo./Marie Katherine Villalon


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