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Media Release: BREASTFEEDING: EDUCATION FOR LIFE to Be Theme for 1999 World Breastfeeding Week

SCHAUMBURG, IL (May 31, 1999)

The eighth annual World Breastfeeding Week will be celebrated from August 1-7, 1999 with the theme "Breastfeeding: Education for Life" by La Leche League International (LLLI) and the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA).

World Breastfeeding Week is part of WABA's ongoing campaign to increase public awareness of the importance of breastfeeding. La Leche League is a founding member of WABA's global alliance of health care providers, non-governmental organizations and mother support groups.

August 1 marks the ninth anniversary of the signing of the Innocenti Declaration on the Protection, Promotion and Support of Breastfeeding which was adopted in 1990 by 32 governments and 10 United Nations Agencies. The Innocenti Declaration recognizes the importance of breastfeeding to infant and maternal health, as well as the social, economic and ecological benefits it provides to the family and society. The Declaration states:

"As a global goal for optimal maternal and child health and nutrition, all women should be enabled to practice exclusive breastfeeding and all infants should be fed exclusively on breast milk from birth to four to six months of age. Thereafter, children should continue to breastfeed while receiving appropriate and adequate complementary foods for up to two years of age or beyond. This child feeding ideal is to be achieved by creating an appropriate environment of awareness and support so that women can benefit in this manner."

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