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

North Road proposal draws heat

Public meeting to address Canfor request

First farmers market fosters a sense of community

Vendors and customers alike excited for return of market

Chief Dr. Robert Joseph awarded Order of Canada

An inspiration and role model for all Canadians

Workshop to help businesses find that perfect employee

Selling location and lifestyle one strategy for success

National ecology expert holds workshop in Fort St. James

Use of natural materials vital for environmental restoration

Police release video on how to ‘run, hide, fight’ if there’s an active shooter

Vancouver police offer video with input from E-Comm, BC EHS, Vancouver Fire and Rescue

VIDEO: Campers leave big mess at rural Vancouver Island campsite

Vehicle parts, garbage, a mattress, lawn chairs, beer cans, and even fecal matter left in the area

30 C in B.C., 30 cm of snow expected for eastern Canada

It might be hot in B.C., but the rest of Canada still dealing with cold

Horgan defends fight to both retain and restrict Alberta oil imports

Alberta says pipeline bottlenecks are kneecapping the industry, costing millions of dollars a day

RCMP caution boaters after two kids pass out from carbon monoxide poisoning

Both children were given oxygen and taken to hospital

Barkerville opens for the season

Highlights of Barkerville’s upcoming season include 150th Dominion Day and pack train re-creation

B.C. invests $115M to create 200 new nurse practitioner jobs

Health Minister says 780,000 B.C. residents don’t have a family doctor

Supreme Court rules social housing residents in B.C. deserve rights too

Tenants trying to stabilize their living situations should not face less legal rights than those paying market rates: Judge

Union calls on prime minister to step into ‘stalled’ Phoenix compensation talks

For more than two years, thousands of federal workers have been affected by Phoenix system

Most Read