Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute (CGBI)

CGBI: Breastfeeding Exclusive January 2018- Letter from the Director

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Welcome to 2018! The Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute (CGBI) team enters 2018 invigorated and inspired by the work ahead.  We closed out 2017 by attending several national meetings in the last quarter of the year including the Black Mothers Breastfeeding Association’s National Seminar, The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Food and Nutrition Expo and Conference, American Public Health Association Annual Meeting and the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine 22nd Annual International Meeting. We were proud to share the work of CGBI and our partners at these meetings and be a part of important conversations about the future of breastfeeding locally, nationally, and globally (see list of presentations).

In January, despite Winter Storm Inga blanketing Chapel Hill, we were able to host members of the Center for Social Inclusion/Race Forward’s Racial Equity Cohort.  Stacy Davis, Executive Director and Felisha Floyd, Chair from the National Association of Peer and Professional Lactation Supporters of Color provided a training on racial equity and cultural humility for our staff, students, clinical preceptors, and partners. Based on our experiences working with this group over the last two years we are committing to this type of training on an annual basis. We know as an institute there is always more for us to learn on our journey to becoming culturally humble.  If you are attending ILCA in Portland this year consider attending our two hour workshop with our NAPPLSC colleagues entitled, “Deconstructing Fake Equity: Lessons Learned from a Dominant Culture Institution”.  Along with this session, CGBI will be contributing three additional sessions to the annual meeting.

In this issue we are featuring an article on the latest publication from our newest team member, Dr. Aunchalee Palmquist who has jumped right in and will be leading our global initiatives. In addition, we will have project updates for the couplet care bassinet and EMPower projects, as well as the associates corner featuring colleague and friend, Brenda Reyes, and the alumni spotlight on Larelle High Bookhart, a former MRTTI student and dietetic intern with CGBI and current Emory University doctoral student. In the coming year you will hear more about our progress with new projects including EMPower Training and ENRICH Carolinas (funded by The Duke Endowment).

If you follow us on our website or Facebook page you have probably seen that current Maternal and Child Health doctoral student and graduate assistant to CGBI, Katie Wouk, along with Research Associate, Dr. Kristin Tully, and the late Dr. Miriam Labbok had the number one read article in 2017 for the Journal of Human Lactation. The systematic review of literature on Step 3 of the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, was led by Katie as a part of our overall contribution to the breastfeeding friendly healthcare space.  In addition, CGBI’s contribution to the University was recently recognized in the Campaign for Carolina where Dr. Kristin Tully and her daughter, Bethany are featured. Big kudos are in order for our 2016-17 Mary Rose Tully Training Initiative cohort who had a 100% pass rate on the October IBCLC exam!

Lastly, I would like to encourage you to attend the 13th annual Breastfeeding and Feminism International Conference (BFIC), The Dance of Nurture in a Complex World: How biology, gender, and social context shape how we nourish our children. As always, this conference stimulates conversation and progressive movement in the field globally and locally. I will be co-hosting/moderating with BFIC founder Paige Hall Smith of UNC Greensboro. CGBI’s presentations include a plenary by Aunchalee Palmquist entitled, “Expressions of Care: Milk sharing, interembodiment, and the senses”, a concurrent session by Kathy Parry on bringing birth and breastfeeding education to the rural indigenous communities of Guatemala, and 2 posters: Kristin Tully on postnatal unit sleep arrangements and safety and Katie Wouk on the relationship between maternal positive emotions during infant feeding and breastfeeding outcomes.

The BFIC conference theme is nicely aligned with the World Breastfeeding Week 2018 theme of Breastfeeding Foundation of Life.  Our friends at WABA urge you to stay connected by checking their website for updates, and pledging your community events online.

Wishing you all a healthy, safe, and productive 2018!