Hi everyone,

I hope you are all travelling reasonably well in this time of pandemic. It’s a brave new world of social distancing, working from home, telehealth and school at home among our usual roles and expectations. For some it will be a mere blip and for others extremely challenging.

What an interesting time to be a new mother. On the one hand it is the perfect way to settle into new life with a baby and establish breastfeeding when there are restrictions on outings and visitors to the home, but on the other I can imagine it can feel isolating. ABA has been supporting mothers in their homes via our Breastfeeding Helpline for 56 years now and we have this down to a fine art. We are working to ensure our local group activities continue by transitioning to Zoom. Some groups will be all over this but not all. We are on Facebook via local groups and pages, but we also have a National Facebook group moderated by trained ABA volunteers to ensure that things stay on the right track as much as possible, and available to anyone — ‘Breastfeeding with ABA’ https://www.facebook.com/groups/BreastfeedingwithABA/

National Mothering Week, our annual event celebrating all things motherhood (4-10 May), will similarly be moved online this year, with local groups hosting virtual events around Australia. The theme is ‘We’re in it together’ and is all about the importance of taking care of ourselves and each other during these uncertain times.

As we speak our training team and several of our volunteers around the country are converting our very popular Breastfeeding Education Classes (antenatal) into a new online format called Breastfeeding Education Live (BEL). We need to work through those that were booked in already and then we will be all systems go!

And for you —we have two new resources on our website. One is a global policy and guidance document with links through to online documents. The other is our new interactive flyer bursting at the seams with ABA Resources for mothers and your work and professional development.

And a brand-new Online Education Module is available. This time the topic is Breast Refusal.

The ‘Breast Refusal’ e-Learning module for Health Professionals is now available for purchase. This module covers common reasons for breast refusal and strategies to assist mother and baby re-establish breastfeeding.

It allows the following professional development points to be gained and a certificate will also be issued upon completion:

  • IBCLCE: Approved for 1 L CERPS
  • Australian College of Midwives: Approved for 1 CPD hour.

Cost: $30 (* ABA professional members receive 20% off with voucher code)

This module and all other accredited e-Learning modules can be accessed via the Professional Development section of the ABA Professional website.

I hope by now all our members have received their ‘new-look’ Breastfeeding Review March 2020 issue? You will see inside we have our Mary Paton Research Award winning paper by Ms Roni Cole. Entries are open for our 2021 Mary Paton Research Award.

Remember that members have access to full pdfs via the Informit link found here when you are logged in. You won’t see the link through to Informit if you are not logged in.

I really hope you are enjoying all our new additions, this newsletter, the website, the online education and new membership features. Feel free to provide feedback to me at bir@breastfeeding.asn.au

And if you don’t already, you can follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter to keep up to date with ‘ABAProfessional’ news as it happens.

Until next time,

Naomi Hull

Senior Manager, Breastfeeding Information and Research