The BC Women’s provincial milk bank accepted donations from more than 300 mothers in 2017. (keatssycamore/flickr)

Breast milk bank keeps B.C. babies healthy

One mother describes why she donates to the bank and why it’s important

Kathryn Ng describes the service from the BC Women’s Hospital milk bank when she needed it as “wonderful.”

Ng, who is now a mother or two and two-time breast milk donor, says the bank helps relieve a new mother’s stress.

“After [a mother] delivers a child through the long delivery process, or even with a C-section, it is quite exhausting,” she says. “While the mom is working on getting the breast milk established, oftentimes it isn’t very much and might not be enough to give to the newborn baby.”

The BC Women’s Hospital provincial milk bank has provided British Columbian mothers with donor milk since 1974.

“Milk donation is truly an altruistic act where one mother is helping another mother,” says coordinator Frances Jones. “They say it takes a community to raise a baby, and certainly for many of our families, they are so thankful that other mothers are willing to help them out.”

Last year, the bank received more than 300 mothers who had extra milk because their babies were premature and don’t need all of their milk, as well as mothers with healthy babies who have extra milk, or bereaved mothers who are willing to donate.

“Babies who are premature have fragile digestive systems,” adds Jones, “and when they receive human milk, it is ideally mother’s own, but often when a baby is born early, it takes a mother a period of time to get her milk supply going.”

The milk bank has grown phenomenally in the last 10 years, she says, because demand for pasteurized donor milk has increased and there has been frequent research on the benefits of it for high risk Neonatal Intensive Care Unit babies.

The bank recently expanded to offer pasteurized donor milk throughout B.C. and 13 NICUs across Canada.

If a mother is interested in donating, Jones suggests they the milk bank at 604-875-3743 or visit their website at bcwomens.ca and search for “milk bank.”


@kieranroconnor
kieran.oconnor@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Stand for Water calls for better mining regulation and practices

Jacinda Mack hopes others will be inspired to take action

Farmers Market sees successful start to season

More vendors expected as veggies and fruit start to ripen

Gallery: Kid’s Bike Parade

Williams Lake bicycle festival carries into the weekend

Bicycle Festival pedals into Williams Lake

Plenty of activities - for bicyclers and non-bicyclers - through weekend

Tsilhqot’in community names officially recognized by Province

Tsilhqot’in names will now appear on provincial government resources, maps and databases

VIDEO: Canadian Forces help flood-ravaged Grand Forks residents heal

Sgt. Bradley Lowes says the military is used to dealing with traumatic times

Chilliwack Chiefs make history with first RBC Cup win

In front of a huge and noisy crowd, the Chiefs claimed their first-ever national junior A title.

UPDATED: Majority of flood evacuees in Kootenay-Boundary allowed to return home

Officials hope to have all 3,000 people back in their homes by Monday night

B.C. Lions bring back 6-time all-star offensive lineman Jovan Olafioye

He was acquired by the Montreal Alouettes last year.

Whitecaps rally for 2-2 draw with FC Dallas

Vancouver climbed out of a two-nil hole to tie FC Dallas 2-2

B.C. VIEWS: Making sense of climate policy

Flood and fire predictions have poor track record so far

Chilliwack Chiefs moving on to RBC Cup final after thrilling win over Ottawa

Kaden Pickering scored the winning goal in the 3rd period as Chilliwack won their semi-final 3-2.

VIDEO: As floodwaters recede, crews assess the damage to Grand Forks’ downtown

More than four dozen firefighters and building inspectors came out to help

Wellington Dukes pull off epic upset of Wenatchee at RBC Cup

The Dukes are off to the championship game after downing the Wild 2-1 Saturday at Prospera Centre.

Most Read