Family Fun Days Celebrate WBW in a Fun Way
Susan Vicknair Theall
Ama LA USA
From: NEW BEGINNINGS, Vol. 22 No. 6, November-December 2005, p. 271
In the summer of 2005, the LLL of Jefferson, Louisiana Group celebrated World Breastfeeding Week for the 15th year! This year, we held two celebrations, which we called "Family Fun Days."
The first event was at a play place for preschoolers. It was ideal because the floor was covered with foam mats and there were toys for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers. The day included an auction of donated items (a breast pump, scrap booking set, baby sling, gift card and a Slumber Bear); door prizes that were raffled every 15 minutes; goodie bags for mothers with breastfeeding information and flyers from donors; and children's activities, which included face painting, balloon animals, and arts and crafts.
We booked the location about two weeks before the event. Emails and postcards were sent to women who had attended Group meetings. I was concerned that there would be more prizes than attendees and hoped to have at least 10 mothers participate. By the time the event was over, 32 adults and 46 children attended. The youngest attendees were nine-day-old twins! My co-Leader, Rachelle Noullet, my former co-Leader, Elizabeth Dunaway, and the two Leaders from Houma, Cayce Hotard and Heather Robichaux, were all there to help. We think this event was a great success!
Our second WBW event was held at Lakeside Mall in Metairie, Louisiana for families around the New Orleans area. It was our biggest event yet with 107 adults and 109 children. It was wonderful! We provided tasty snacks, which included organic yogurt, potato chips, fresh watermelon, and applesauce, donated by Whole Foods Market; and cookies and chip clips, donated by Pamela's Cookies. We also served a sheet cake with the WBW logo, donated by Maurice's French Pastries. Donations were collected from businesses in the New Orleans community and all over the country. We used these donations for raffles, door prizes, and auctions.
For this event, we were joined by eight lactation consultants, the state breastfeeding director of the health units and WIC program, the Breastfeeding Program Coordinator for Tulane Xavier (TUXCOE), and five doulas. We provided plastic bags (donated by Medela) with breastfeeding information including a copy of NEW BEGINNINGS, an LLLI Catalog, and various brochures. We also had a large basket of disposable breast pads, so all the breastfeeding mothers stocked up.
The free children's activities included balloon animals, face painting, and arts and crafts. Children colored pictures, made paper flowers, paper plate fish, and door hangers. This was only possible due to the help of the 12 young people who volunteered to organize the activities and work with the children.
The income from these events will keep our Breastfeeding Information Line active for another year. The WBW events took months of work, but it was time well spent. We are thrilled with the results!