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North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust - 70 years of the NHS

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Home > News > Trust seeks to recruit new breastfeeding peer support volunteers

Trust seeks to recruit new breastfeeding peer support volunteers

Posted on Wednesday 13th July 2016
Helen Ferris and peer supporters

North Cumbria University Hospitals (NCUH) is looking for new volunteers to help new and expectant mums in successfully breastfeeding their babies.

Breastfeeding peer support volunteers are mums who are currently breastfeeding or have breastfed their children, who undergo training to help other mothers in their breastfeeding journey. They are vital in ensuring good feeding relationships are established, working with mothers both on wards and at breastfeeding support groups.

NCUH is seeking to recruit 18 new volunteers to take up the role in both Carlisle and Whitehaven. Peer supporters can give any time they have, most giving just a few hours a week, to work around their lifestyle. In return volunteers will receive training and support and a will gain wealth of experience.

There will be a recruitment event in Penrith on 26 July, from 10am – 12pm at The Hub at Penrith Community Hospital, where potential volunteers can find out more and speak to the experts.

NCUH has committed to the UNICEF “UK Baby Friendly Initiative”, which provides a framework with the aim of ensuring that all parents make informed decisions about feeding their babies and are supported in their chosen feeding method. Having established peer support volunteers contributes to that framework.

Helen Ferris, infant feeding co-ordinator, said: “We have had many breastfeeding peer supporters volunteer for us over the years, and I can’t express enough how much they have helped women and their babies in North Cumbria. There are so many well documented long-term benefits to breastfeeding for both mother and baby, and our volunteers help to maximise those benefits.

“We’re now at a stage where can recruit more volunteers, all we ask is that applicants are breastfeeding or have breastfed in the past to have an understanding of the journey that mums are on. We really hope to follow in the previous successes of this volunteer scheme.”

If you are interested in becoming a breastfeeding peer supporter please contact Helen Ferris helen.ferris@ncuh.nhs.uk for more information.