On Saturday, the island’s breastfeeding moms, their infants, families, and breastfeeding advocates gathered for the Global Big Latch-On. This worldwide event is held every August to celebrate and promote breastfeeding and provide peer support to nursing moms.
The Global Big Latch-On event and proclamation signing officially mark Breastfeeding Awareness Month on Guam. It puts a spotlight on the need to increase community awareness and support of breastfeeding on Guam and emphasizes the need to implement the Nana Yan Patgon Act.
The legislation allows working mothers to sustain their breast milk supply while at work and also protects a woman’s right to breastfeed in private or public establishments.
Ednalyna Martin, a breastfeeding counselor with Sagua Mañagu and a member of Guam’s breastfeeding action team, provides an overview of the Global Latch-On event.
“Actually globally, this is their tenth year celebrating it, and for Guam, this is the fifth year. This is one of the events that we always look forward to or introduce to welcome breastfeeding awareness week. Here, we actually celebrate it as a whole month, so we have breastfeeding awareness month,” Martin said.
She added: “This is really an amazing thing to be a part of because it happens globally. So, it is a wonderful opportunity again for moms to get together and for us to really support each other and just to bring more awareness to breastfeeding altogether.”
Aside from the Global Latch-On and proclamation signing, there are other events lined-up for the month. There’s the 6th Annual Guam Breastfeeding Awareness Health Fair, which will be held at the Micronesia Mall’s Center Court on Saturday, Aug. 24 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. where residents can enjoy a wide variety of information, educational tabletop exhibits from various community service providers, family entertainment, and raffle prizes.