Britain’s first teaching Baby Café is launching on Thursday 21st June at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, in partnership with Oxford Brookes University.
The new Baby Café was developed by Hazel Abbott, Senior Lecturer in Midwifery at Oxford Brookes University, which now delivers breastfeeding education accredited by the UNICEF Baby Friendly Initiative. The new service is a fundamental part of the University’s drive for best practice around training midwives to deliver community support to new mothers.
The Oxford Brookes University Baby Café will be available as a weekly drop-in for inpatients at the John Radcliffe, and is one of four Baby Café sessions taking place on the ward each week. The new service will also be actively used to teach and inform midwifery students about supporting breastfeeding women.
Hazel Abbott, Senior Lecturer in Midwifery at Oxford Brookes University, said: “The innovative dual function of this new Baby Café makes it a first in the breastfeeding world. It is a great example of partnership working between Oxford Brookes University and the John Radcliffe Hospital and also the University’s engagement with the local community. We are thrilled to see the launch of the first service of this kind, which will provide both support and teaching opportunities, enabling women to initiate breastfeeding in the first few days and helping them breastfeed for longer.”
There are a further
12 community-based Baby Cafés in Oxfordshire which mothers can access once they leave the ward.
Baby Café, established in 2000, is a national network of breastfeeding drop-ins, combining the expertise of skilled practitioners and mothers in a relaxed and informal café-style environment to offer invaluable support to parents at all stages of breastfeeding.
Baby Café has over 100 drop-ins around the UK, supporting up to 10,000 mums a year. They are open to all those interested in any aspect of breastfeeding – mothers, partners, supporters – and take place once a week in children’s centres, community venues and more recently on hospital wards supported by additional local community venues. To find out more about how to set one up, click on the following link.