Kuala Belait - In conjunction with World Breastfeeding Week, Suri Seri Begawan Hospital (SSBH) in Kuala Belait launched the district-level Breastfeeding Week for the Belait District yesterday, at the hospital's multi-purpose hall.
Present as guest of honour at the launch was the Director of Medical Services, Medical Department at the Ministry of Health (MoH), Dr Hjh Lailawati binti Hj Jumat.
The Chief Religious Teacher at SSBH recited Surah Al-Fatihah and a thanksgiving prayer to bless the launching ceremony. This was followed by a welcoming address by the Co-chairperson of the event, Acting Nursing Officer of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Services (SSBH) Dyg Hjh Siti Halimah binti Md Tahir.
The event was attended by some150 officers and staff from government departments who viewed a video presentation and exhibition highlighting the importance of breastfeeding.
A talk on 'Priorities of Breastfeeding' was also given by Dr Hjh Roslin binti Hj Sharbawi, a Senior Medical Officer who is also the Head of Mothers' Health Services at the Health Services Department, MoH.
Dyg Hjh Siti Halimah stated that among the objectives of the programme were to achieve the goals and aspirations of the Ministry of Health in ensuring and increasing the optimal rate of breastfeeding practices among mothers in the country; to increase and solidify MoH's initiatives in supporting the breastfeeding practices for infants, mothers and children as ruled by international bodies such as World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF; and to convey appreciation to mothers who breastfed their babies and were recognised as role models to others in realising MoH's 'Mother to Mother Breastfeeding Support Group' initiative.
She added that during the event, copies of the 'Breastfeeding Wall of Fame' book published by the Ministry of Health were also handed over to 24 mothers in the district who practised breastfeeding their babies for the first six months after their birth. She hoped that with the publication of the book, mothers could share their experiences, ideas and best practices.
Dr Hjh Lailawati stated that it is the 20th year Breastfeeding Week has been celebrated worldwide and for Brunei Darussalam, it has been an annual activity for the Ministry of Health. Research has showed that breast milk is proven to be beneficial to the health of both mothers and their infants. She added that the government through the MoH has continuously promoted and incorporated breastfeeding practices. Efforts include provision of '10 steps to successful breastfeeding' policy; mother to mother breastfeeding support group; special classes for pregnant mothers; establishment of a national committee for Mothers, Infants and Children aged under three years and the provision of breastfeeding rooms at government buildings and shopping malls.--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin