Every August, women around the country join together to celebrate National Breastfeeding Month. A month dedicated to highlighting the importance of breastfeeding, offering support for breastfeeding mothers, and resources for women interested in breastfeeding. At the end of August, a week is dedicated specifically to black women with the Black Breastfeeding Week initiative. While supporting the main mission of National Breastfeeding Month, Black Breastfeeding Week seeks step in where the lack of awareness and resources available for black women who are interested in breastfeeding exists. Empowering, encouraging, and informing women of color on breastfeeding and offering support in this space that has a complicated history in our community.
Why Black Breastfeeding Week is Important
Like so many disparities that exist within our community, breastfeeding has long been an issue where a pretty significant gap exists. To put it plainly, 75% of white women have breastfed while only 58.9% of black women have breastfed. This disparity is important to note as it relates to many of the issues that black women and children face. From decreasing black infant mortality rates, preventing diseases that are prevalent in the black community, and overcoming cultural stigmas, increasing the black breastfeeding rate can have a significant impact on the health of our community.
In order to address the racial disparity that exists, it’s crucial to have black women represented in this conversation which is where Black Breastfeeding Week is extremely valuable. This time allows for black women to be highlighted in the breastfeeding space, to encourage other women and send the message that Black Moms Breastfeed Too.
Whether you’re a mother, a health worker, friend, or supporter there are many ways that you can get involved and help raise awareness for Black Breastfeeding Week. Join the conversation on social media, check out and SHARE the #blackbreastfeedingweek hashtag on Instagram & Twitter, and learn more about this celebratory week on blackbreastfeedingweek.org.