Press Release

Federal Ministry of Health Celebrating 2019 World Breastfeeding Week -Empower Parents. Enable Breastfeeding

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Preparations are in earnest for the celebration of 2019 World Breast Feeding week. A series of activities is planned to promote optimal breastfeeding practices and policies essential for improving child survival as well as facilitating the achievement of sustainable outcomes. As part of activities to celebrate the World Breastfeeding Week in Nigeria, Alive & Thrive, UNICEF, CS-SUNN, Action Against Hunger and Nutrition International are coming together to support the Federal Ministry of Health on several key initiatives to raise awareness on Exclusive Breastfeeding across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

This year’s event is scheduled to take place in Abuja on the 6th of August 2019 with the theme, “Empower Parents, Enable breastfeeding.” The event will involve high profile personalities such as the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Mrs. Aisha Buhari, Ministers and other delegates across the federation.  

World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) is a global campaign that aims to inform, anchor, engage and galvanise action on breastfeeding and related issues. This year the #WBW2019 theme is “Empower parents, enable breastfeeding.” #WBW2019 advocates for (a) parental social protection policies and legislation, (b) parent-friendly workplaces in both formal and informal sectors, and (c) parent-friendly values and gender-equitable social norms. Furthermore, Alive & Thrive will host a “Launch of World Breastfeeding Week in Nigeria” Facebook Live event on Tuesday, Aug. 6 at noon. Go to to participate!

The Abuja event will include the official launch the “Zero Water Exclusive Breastfeeding” Public Presentation of Maternity Assessment Report, Public Presentation of CS-SUNN Breastfeeding Video and the unveiling of the Start Strong IYCF Brand. This will be complemented with a panellist session involving distinguished stakeholders such as: H.E. Aisha Ummi Garba, the wife of Kaduna State Governor and the Chairperson of Kaduna State Emergency Nutrition Action Plan (KADENAP), the Senate Chairman of the Health Committee, and the President of the Nutrition Society of Nigeria.

According to Dr. Chris Osa Isokpunwu, the Head of Nutrition and SUN Focal Point Federal Ministry of Health, certain cultural practices and lack of support for parents at work stand in the way of sustainable development. In Nigeria, mothers returning to paid work after childbirth is one of the leading reasons for early cessation of breastfeeding. Only 9% of organizations have a workplace breastfeeding policy. The campaign aims to address maternity protection, to promote and support exclusive breastfeeding.

Alive & Thrive (A&T) is a global initiative to save lives, prevent illness, and ensure healthy growth and development through improved breastfeeding and complementary feeding practices. In Nigeria, Alive & Thrive aims to enhance child health, nutrition and cognitive development outcomes and save lives through a sustainable national program of optimum breastfeeding and complementary feeding practices in children. The Alive & Thrive initiative, managed by FHI 360, is currently funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Irish Aid, the Tanoto Foundation, and UNICEF.

Alive & Thrive will host a “Launch of World Breastfeeding Week in Nigeria” Facebook Live event on Tuesday, Aug. 6 at noon. Go to to participate!

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