The World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) is a global network of individuals
& organisations concerned with the protection, promotion & support of breastfeeding worldwide.
WABA action is based on the Innocenti Declaration, the Ten Links for Nurturing the Future and the
Global Strategy for Infant & Young Child Feeding. WABA is in consultative status with UNICEF & an NGO
in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC).
What's breastfeeding got to do with Gender issues?

BREASTFEEDING is an important part of women's reproduction and benefits women's health. Women have the right to breastfeed as enshrined in the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). As with other issues concerning women's health and sexuality, breastfeeding takes place in a gendered world.

Hence breastfeeding promotion programmes should take into account the  gendered context of women's lives. Breastfeeding and child rearing are particularly difficult for the majority of the world's women, marginalized by poverty, violence, poor nutritional status, job insecurities and gender inequalities.

Contribution to the General Comment on the right to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) by IBFAN and WABA. In light of the upcoming General Comment on the right to sexual and reproductive health (SRH), the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN) and World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) developed a paper for the attention of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights on why breastfeeding is a women's reproductive right and how this right can be supported.

Click here for the full paper.
Gender and breastfeeding! - What's gender got to do with breastfeeding?

This is a fun and interesting quiz developed by WABA gender experts. This quiz will enable you to assess and improve your gender awareness as well as knowledge on gender and breastfeeding related issues!

Click here to take the quiz.

Focusing on women and complexities of infant feeding

The “10th Annual Breastfeeding and Feminism International Conference: Celebrating a Decade of Change” is going to be held from March 19-20 2015 at “The Center for women’s Health and wellness and the Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute” , in Chapel Hill, NC USA

The theme for the conference is “Breastfeeding, Social Justice, and Equity: Reflecting, Reclaiming, and Re-visioning”

This is the only breastfeeding conference that focuses on the sociocultural, economic, health and political impacts on, and of, women's infant feeding decisions.

For more information, registration or submission of abstracts please click here

You may also visit and like their Facebook page

WABA Guidelines for Gender Sensitive Materials, Advocacy and Communications (Oct 2008)

WABA has developed the "Guidelines for Gender Sensitive Materials and Advocacy" as part of mainstreaming gender at all levels.
Click here for more information. English or Spanish
WABA Gender Publications: Please click here for more information
Towards a Common Advocacy Agenda

Statement made at the Second WABA Global Forum in Arusha, Tanzania,
23-27 September 2002, based on the four workshops on
Theme 7 - Outreach to Women's Groups.

Breastfeeding is a basic human right and it is agreed that the protection of women's right to breastfeed is a shared position of the women's movement and breastfeeding movement. Women can fully exercise this right only where there exists a gender equal social and political environment, whereby women's contribution to productive and reproductive work, including nurturing, is recognised, and where all forms of breastfeeding support can be made available. Gender equity is therefore basic to the breastfeeding movement.

 The breastfeeding movement also recognises:

That breastfeeding support requires changes in all social environments and policies.

That social transformation needs to take place at all levels to bring about gender equality.

Women's right to life and survival.

Women's right to choose free of commercial, medical and political pressure.

Women's right to food, irrespective of race, class, caste, religion, region and age.


Women's groups and breastfeeding groups have decided to put on their advocacy agenda the following demands:

To recognise the common concern of the adverse effect of globalisation and privatisation on health care services, and the increasing feminisation of poverty.

  Women's right to accessible, affordable, comprehensive, high quality and gender - sensitive women's health services.

Women's right to breastfeeding based on informed choices, free of commercial, medical and political pressure.

Social recognition and value of women's work at home as caregivers and nurturers.

Implementation of maternity protection for women at paid work in the formal and informal sectors.

Women's right to food, adequate nutrition, rest, safe water and shelter.

World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action
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