BreastfeedLA hosts 300+ at free Breastfeeding Advocacy 101 Training!

On Thursday, August 31, 2017, months of planning and presenters from all over the state came together along with attendees from all over L.A. County at BreastfeedLA’s “Breastfeeding Advocacy 101” training! Over 300 attendees, presenters, volunteers, exhibitors, and staff spent the day at the California Endowment in downtown Los Angeles. Thanks to the support of generous sponsors, BreastfeedLA was able to offer this training completely free to all attendees.

While BreastfeedLA participated in several community partner events throughout August, this training marked their true celebration of Breastfeeding Awareness Month, and was a great accomplishment by their newly-formed, dynamic Advocacy Committee, spearheaded by local IBCLC, Katie Waters-Smith. The goal of the day was to not only ignite and inspire advocacy within all the various members of the greater L.A. County breastfeeding and lactation community, but to arm advocates with the tools and resources needed to advocate confidently and efficiently.

The day began with an “Advocate Voices” panel facilitated by California Breastfeeding Coalition Executive Director, Robbie Gonzalez-Dow, where attendees heard real-life advocacy stories from parents. Representatives from such organizations as the ACLU of Southern California, California Work & Family Coalition, Legal Aid at Work, and the California Women’s Law Center presented on topics such as Breastfeeding Laws, Leave and Accommodation Laws, Breastfeeding in the Education Sector, and much more. The day concluded with a role-play portion with attendees asked to practice the skills and information they learned throughout the day. BreastfeedLA recorded interviews during the day and hope to release a video of the training soon.

Attendee Tanya Colligan, IBCLC and LCCE shared this about the day:  I was very impressed with this event’s topics and speakers. I learned more of how to advocate beyond just a home visit or hospital, but for people in prisons. In addition, learning about state and federal parental leave and rights clearly will help me advocate the information in the Lamaze class I teach. 

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