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 is the WBW? 

The World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) is WABA's main global campaign for social mobilisation to generate public awareness and support for breastfeeding. WBW has the greatest outreach for the breastfeeding movement, involving over 120 countries. 

When is the WBW? 

WBW is celebrated the world over on 1-7 August. However, some countries that found the dates unsuitable for their countries observe the week in different time of the year. If you are not sure when WBW is celebrated in your country, please contact the breastfeeding group nearest to you. 

What is this year's theme for the WBW? 

The ability to communicate is something we learn very early in life. For example, the gentle kick in a mother's belly is a baby's first contact with the outside world. During breastfeeding, a baby's eye contact with its mother helps induce the 'let-down' reflex and its suckling sends all kinds of information and signals to the right spots within the mother's body to produce more milk at the right time, right temperature and right amount for baby.  

Each year new research reaffirms the importance of exclusive breastfeeding for about six months and continued breastfeeding while providing adequate complementary foods up to two years of life and beyond. Breastmilk provides optimal nourishment for infants and reduces the risks of certain diseases, including diarrhoea, and respiratory tract (including pneumonia), ear, and urinary tract infections. The act of breastfeeding is an essential component of good child care, contributing to healthy growth and psychosocial development.  

Breastfeeding also reduces women's risk of breast and ovarian cancer, iron deficiency anemia, and hip fracture. Impact of new technologies Interference with infant feeding occurs more and more often with the advent of new information and communication technologies and the exploitation by unethical business practices.  

While we recognise that such technologies can be exploited to negatively impact on lifestyles and consumption patterns undermining breastfeeding, we also acknowledge the great leaps they have made to facilitate speedier and more widespread distribution of information. Breastfeeding advocates must ensure that timely, accurate, relevant and culturally appropriate breastfeeding messages are conveyed.  

This year's WBW theme, Breastfeeding in the Information Age, underscores the importance of transforming and conveying the facts of breastfeeding via all the available forms of communication such as the internet, radio, TV, video, newspapers, cartoons, story telling, puppets, music, drama, role-play, flip charts and billboards.   

Click here to read our ACTION FOLDER 

What are the WBW 2001 goals?. 

  • to highlight the various forms and modes of communcation and effective ways of using them
  • to emphasise core breastfeeding information (eg. exclusive breastfeeding)
  • to share ideas and experiences on communicating challenging issues and threats to breastfeeding
  • to provide and stimulate more innovative and helpful approaches to support breastfeeding mothers 

How can I organize the WBW in my country? 

WBW experiences in various countries have shown that better results are achieved and more people are involved when activities are well planned, organized and coordinated. The actions described here can be carried out in your neighborhood, your city, your state or even your country. Wherever you are, it is important to plan ahead!  

Start acting now! 

  • Campaign at the national and international levels, using television, print and radio, including community radio stations;
  • Develop a global online network for a multi-cultural breastfeeding resource site;
  • Organise a workshop to help breastfeeding advocates and mothers overcome the fear of using new technologies;
  • Facilitate the creation of a network of kindred organisations and individuals from around the world to engage in cross-cultural exchange and education;
  • Identify new audiences and ways to reach them;
  • Use the WABA and other breastfeeding websites to share examples of how your group promotes breastfeeding. 

How can I participate in WBW?  

Click here to read our suggestions to build an action plan.  

WBW International Coordination:  WABA Secretariat. 

Come back soon to read more information about this WBW year's theme in English and other languages! 

NETPOP Project (Brazil) ORIGEM, a Brazillian breastfeeding and mother support group is working on a government-supported project which involves teaching computer skills and internet access to poor people for free. They are training 11,000 people in computer skills and have created four centers for free internet access in poor communities. Through Netpop, ORIGEM also conducts breastfeeding advocacy work, and promotes maternal nutrition.  

World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action
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