Baby Café USA is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and supporting the development of US Baby Cafés. Baby Café USA is an international affiliate of Baby Café UK.
Currently, approximately 75% of all US women start breastfeeding, but of those moms, 60% do not reach their own goals. Baby Cafes offer support and trouble-shooting in the very early weeks as well as assistance with pumping and maintaining supply if moms return to work outside the home.
In 2006, Lucia Jenkins RN, IBCLC brought the Baby Café concept to the USA, and the first USA café was opened in Melrose, Ma, by Hallmark Health and Melrose-Wakefield Hospital. The first WIC Baby Café was started four years later out of Hallmark Health's WIC program in Malden, Ma.
In 2008, Lucia presented the Baby Café concept at the ILCA (International Lactation Consultant Association) conference in Las Vegas, and the El Paso, Texas Baby Café was started in November of that year, with more opening soon after.
There are currently fourty two Baby Cafés in the USA, in twelve states, with more in the development process, and many of them are associated with WIC offices.
All USA Baby Cafés are baby-friendly, and follow guidelines set forth by the Baby Café USA, in conjunction with Baby cafe UK. Baby Cafés provide free, informal, ongoing, high-quality drop-in lactation care in efforts to raise exclusivity and duration rates in their surrounding communities.
Data gathered at the cafés demonstrates that the Baby Café model is an effective way to increase exclusive breastfeeding rates and increase the duration goals mothers have set for themselves. The Baby Café connects breastfeeding mothers around the world, and due to its community exposure, availability, and frequency of operation, is an excellent way to provide ongoing skilled free lactation care to mothers.
Café Mom's comment
Beth Hampson, who visited the Melrose-Wakefield Baby Cafe with both her first child, and subsequent set of twins, states "I would not have succeeded at breastfeeding any of my children without the help of the Baby Cafe. Every mother should have one to go to."
Caroline Lieber, tells her story. “After my second daughter was born, I visited the Baby Café to get guidance and improve the experience for both my daughter and myself. Even though I was confident about breastfeeding, getting the care of an expert lactation consultant helped a lot. Later, when my daughter was ready to wean, the moms at the café provided great ideas on how to make the transition for my family.”