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Book Review
Nurturing the Future: Our First Five Years

by Sarah Amin
Reviewed by Anne M. Clark
From: LEAVEN, Vol. 34 No. 4, August-September 1998, p. 85

Nurturing the Future: Our First Five Years, by Sarah Amin, is the five year history of the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA), an umbrella network for organizations and individuals dedicated to the protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding. This book details the struggle for restoring the culture of breastfeeding to the world and the large number of individuals and organizations working to support breastfeeding.

Nurturing the Future explores the birth and growth of WABA and its relationship to the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF. It details the development of The International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes, the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) and the Innocenti Declaration as well as explores the degree of implementation of these programs worldwide. Amin describes the many international organizations, both governmental and nongovernmental, that provide advocacy for breastfeeding issues. For the novice, the book provides an introduction into the intense political arena in which breastfeeding issues are debated. It offers the well- initiated an understanding of the complexities promoting and hindering global endorsement of breastfeeding.

This book moves forward from the core of LLLI philosophy, embracing and strengthening these fundamental tenets. The words "mother-to-mother support" and "worldwide" are integral and show a vision that has withstood the test of time.

LLLI is recognized throughout the book as a key player. For example, LLL is mentioned in the foreword, along with others, as struggling to restore the culture of breastfeeding. In a time line called "The Breastfeeding Movement-through the years, 1939-1996," LLL holds its very own spot as the first organized breastfeeding group in 1956. LLLI is noted as operating the Center for Breastfeeding Information. It is also described as one of the 46 mother-to-mother support organizations on the Mother Support Group Task Force, one of eight WABA task forces. Rebecca Magalhäes, LLLI Director of International Action and Development, is the volunteer coordinator for this task force.

This paperback book is 8 x 11 inches and the print is large. There are plenty of dates, facts, time lines and tables. Many photos, line drawings, logos, cartoons, pictures of pamphlet covers, and still shots of video tape lend an informal air and scrapbook-like quality to this book. Although there are no references, index, bibliography, glossary or listing of abbreviations, there are helpful resources scattered throughout the book and 17 addresses are included on the back cover.

Leader and Group libraries will be enriched by the addition of this book. Leaders and members will gain a greater understanding of the leading role that LLLI has had in breastfeeding advocacy and the scope of the work undertaken globally to create a breastfeeding friendly world.

Inspired by the book, I'd like to propose a motto for a future LLLI Conference: Human Milk-The Work of Women, the Future of Babies.

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