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World Walk 2002: One Small Walk for LLL, One Giant Step for Mankind

by Mary Hurt
LLLI Public Relations Associate
From: LEAVEN, Vol. 38 No. 3, June-July 2002 p. 68.

Did you know that you don’t have to Walk very far to reach all areas of the world? While some people Walk or run significant distances to celebrate their World Walk for Breastfeeding, most Walks are held with babies in arms and toddlers in tow and take place around a mall or park area. The distance covered during an actual Walk may not be far, but the effects are far reaching. With one short Walk, you not only make a difference in the lives and health of mothers and babies around the world, but also in the quality of the world in which we live. How is this possible? Walks generate positive publicity for breastfeeding and the necessary funds to spread LLLI’s mission to encourage and support breastfeeding.

World Walks for Breastfeeding, celebrated globally any time between May 15 and September 15, are often held in conjunction with World Breastfeeding Week, which is always celebrated August 1 through 7. One purpose of the World Walk is to call attention to the benefits of breastfeeding. Every year LLL Groups around the world distribute press releases, found in the World Walk for Breastfeeding Kit along with many helpful publicity tips, in order to present the benefits of breastfeeding and La Leche League in a positive light.

In many Groups, Leaders rely on the talents of enthusiastic Group Workers to handle many of the details of this relatively easy publicity opportunity and “fun-raiser”; mothers, however, cannot rely on mother-to-mother support if they do not know that your LLL Group exists. The Walk creates an LLL presence in your community and lets mothers know where they can find support, and how breastfeeding their babies can make a difference.

Another purpose of the World Walk for Breastfeeding, perhaps more significant than ever because such a large number of not-for profit organizations felt the sting of reduced donations over the past year, is to raise money for La Leche League on every level—Group, Area, Division, and International. All of the materials you need, including postcards, thank-you notes, charitable receipts, and fundraising hints are included in the World Walk for Breastfeeding Kit. All Areas have Area Walk Coordinators who can provide you with additional support, information, and encouragement around your fundraising efforts.

While some Groups find that the World Walk for Breastfeeding is the only fundraiser they need to help their Group with expenses, other Groups will use the World Walk funds to “Walk” to their Area Conference, or even to the International Conference in San Francisco in 2003. The proceeds from the Walk are beneficial to everyone. The contributions you generate help babies in your community, and ultimately, the world: perhaps a mother in your community will receive the necessary support to breastfeed; there may be a mother in Guatemala, Kenya, or Uzbekistan who will be given the support she needs to begin and continue breastfeeding her baby; perhaps another health care professional somewhere in the world will learn about the benefits and management of breastfeeding. Because you Walk for Breastfeeding, you are helping to change the world!

A short Walk has far-reaching effects. Why not take that first step today by ordering a World Walk Kit? Walk Kits are free ($5 US shipping and handling) and can be ordered by calling 847-519-9585. Registration postcards are also available on La Leche League’s Web site at: www.lalecheleague.org/images/02_walk_postcard.pdf/

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