Breastfeeding challenge met

Almost 50 moms, babies, kids and some support staff were on hand for an event to celebrate world breastfeeding week in Canada.

Jody Tkach feeds four-month-old baby Olive while Michelle Peach feeds two-month-old Kylan.

The quiet environment at the Parksville Library was interrupted for a short time Saturday morning, but it was all for a great cause.

Almost 50 moms, babies, kids and some support staff were on hand for an event to celebrate world breastfeeding week in Canada.

Nourishing the Mind was the theme of this year’s tenth annual Breast Feeding Challenge.

An international event with the goal of setting the record for the most babies breastfeeding at one time, the challenge — in Parksville at least, proved not to be a particularly easy one to meet.

After half an hour of story time with Librarian Barbara Kerfoot, the little ones were calm, but in some cases a little too calm, as some of the infants were fast asleep.

Others indicated they wanted more stories.

In all, 17 mothers nursed their babies at the Parksville Library during the event.

Among the group were Jody Tkach, with her four-month- old daughter Olive and Michelle Peach, with her two-month- old son Kylan.

The two mothers are both public health nurses from the Parksville Health Unit who are currently off work on maternity leave.

Tkach admitted she struggled with breastfeeding her first child and had to give up after only two-and-a-half months, but she said that with her second baby she found nursing to be much easier.

She said as a public health nurse and a mother, she knows that breastfeeding is different with each child and that is why she encourages all mothers to keep trying, even if at first it proves to be fairly difficult.

Parksville Public Health Nurse Gail Downey was on hand for the 11 a.m. “latch on,” when the mothers and infants began to feed, and said she was pleased with the turnout.

Breastfeeding has been shown to have a great many health benefits.

The World Health Organization knows this as does Health Canada, both organizations recommending that mothers breastfeed their babies for up to two years and beyond.

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