While breastfeeding is of course an important cause all year round, August is officially National Breastfeeding Month. Over the next few weeks, organizations that work to promote the practice of breastfeeding and help nursing mothers will take part in this annual awareness campaign — and they could seriously use your help. Whether you choose to straight up donate or send your shopping dollars in their direction, there are plenty of products and causes that support breastfeeding moms to put on your radar for breastfeeding awareness month 2018.
While breastfeeding might be more widely accepted now than it was in the past, not all moms who want to nurse have the support or education they need to do so successfully. And that's true even in developed countries like the U.S.: As Romper noted in a previous article, while there are laws in place that protect nursing moms in the workplace, women still get shamed for pumping at work. That's why awareness campaigns like this one are so important, and it's also why these organizations need all the help they can get.
So if you have the resources to share, these are some excellent places to start with... not to mention a few fabulous products that are worth every penny!
1Ingrid & Isabel
In the poorest neighborhoods of Indonesia's capital, Jakarta (where breastfeeding rates are alarmingly low), Mercy Corps fosters neighborhood-level support groups, creates training programs, and promotes awareness about the benefits of breastfeeding. For $70, you can buy breastfeeding classes for moms in need.
Donate to this non-profit and you'll aid breastfeeding awareness efforts and breastfeeding moms in the U.S. and around the world. 1,000 Days provides breastfeeding counseling, fights for mandatory paid maternity leave, and works to limit formula marketing; they also help to implement "baby-friendly" policies in hospitals and health care centers.
5The Academy Of Breastfeeding Medicine
For over 20 years, the ABM has brought doctors together to "provide evidence-based solutions" to global breastfeeding challenges. Make a donation and you'll be recognized once a year in ABM's peer-reviewed Journal of Breastfeeding Medicine, as well as at the annual meeting.
6Action Against Hunger
Committed to educating and supporting mothers around the world about the importance of breastfeeding for the first six months, Action Against Hunger works to improve care and feeding practices for children from six months of age to five years and provides peer support groups for pregnant and new moms led by healthcare workers. Donate here.
8Nursing Mothers Counsel
9La Leche League International
Did you know La Leche League International has its own line of nursing bras and apparel? A portion of all sales go to LLLI, which helps moms across the globe to breastfeed through "mother-to-mother support, encouragement, information, and education," and to promote awareness. Plus, the bras are pretty great -- like this "Danica" Nursing Sports Bra ($24, LLLI Nursing Bras & Apparel).