I am honored to be part of this campaign, to be able to support something so close to my heart. When I was pregnant I was determined to breastfeed my child, for not only the amazing, beautiful bonding experience, but also so I could be able to sustain my son from my own body, and to be able to provide him with the best possible nourishment available to him. I had sought out support and guidance from lactation consultant, Julie Bouchet-Horwitz, weeks before Brandon was born so that I could prepare to begin our breastfeeding journey. Unfortunately, we met struggles early on, but were determined not to give up. I felt like a failure, like I could not do something so natural, like I could not provide for my son. I spent so many nights crying and questioning myself. I felt hopeless and alone. With Julie's kind support, and the generosity of donor mamas and the New York Milk Bank, I am so happy to say that Brandon is almost 6 months old and has never had a drop of formula!
The benefits of breaskmilk for babies are countless and irrefutable, and something that cannot be replicated by even the best formula out there. Every baby deserves the very best, which is why I am asking that you contibute to my fundraiser to raise money to improve and further develop the New York Milk Bank. This will allow Julie and her team to continue to help other mamas like me supplement their babies, as well as provide human milk to premature and NICU babies, because it is what they both need and deserve!
More info below:
The New York Milk Bank Inc wrote -
We are the doctors and lactation specialists and managers of The New York Milk Bank, a new nonprofit that we launched this year in Hastings-on-Hudson, NY because pasteurized donor milk saves the lives of premature infants.
Our mission is to collect donor milk, process it safely, and get it to every infant whose own mom isn't able to breastfeed.
We know that our frailest babies who get formula can develop a terrible intestinal disease called NEC - necrotizing enterocolitis. Babies who develop the disease can face a lifetime of difficulties and in New York State alone about 100 babies die from NEC each year.
We're here to prevent that from happening.
We've had an incredible year so far as we push toward our goal: We bought our first pasteurizer and opened The New York Milk Bank just this summer. We bought huge industrial freezers to store raw milk that so many generous women donated. As more milk arrived we bought more freezers and rented a nearby storage room to house them.
We even went to Albany and pushed through passage of The Nickolas Bill that will require Medicaid to pay for donor milk when it goes into law on Jan. 1, 2017. We're so proud of that effort.
We're processing 1100 ounces of milk each week, but we need to greatly increase our capacity to be ready for the upcoming demand when the new bill takes effect. We need a bigger space, even more freezers to hold donor milk, and a second pasteurizer which would increase production threefold. That processor alone costs $40,000!