LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - 'World Breastfeeding Week'; it's a campaign to support new mothers returning to work and for Woodland Heights Medical Center in Lufkin, the goal is simple.
"Educating mothers on how to pump their milk while they're at work and be able to give it to their babies when they get home," said Roxane Handel, International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant.
Sponsored by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action, this year's theme is 'Let's Make It Work', words new mom Ryan Cooper have had to live by the past four days.
"He came out a little compromised, you know, he was a little early, a little puny I guess, he's been on top of it big time," said Ryan Cooper, a new mom who breastfeeds.
On top of it big time, especially since little Conner wasn't due until August 27th. His perseverance; it's something she partially credits to breastfeeding.
"It made being separated from him a little bit easier, you know. At first you're like 'Hey, you took my baby,where do I go?' I go home and my baby stays here, but then when I come here and can give him [breast milk] he wakes up and he's happy," Cooper said.
More companies, like Woodland Heights, are 'Texas Mother-Friendly Worksites', employers who stand behind employees who chose to breastfeed.
"We do provide a room for mothers to be able to pump and store their milk. To be able to encourage their breastfeeding habits once they get home," Handel said.
And for Cooper, while the task may be uncomfortable and time-consuming, it's all worth it.
"It's so rewarding, like I kind of brag on myself all the time, like my family and Brett, everybody gets excited because I get excited," Cooper said.
According to the 'World Health Organization and American Academy of Pediatrics', breastfeeding is recommended beginning at birth until an infant is six months old.