Mother Support Task Force (MSTF)
The Global Initiative for Mother Support for Breastfeeding (GIMS for Breastfeeding) is a global initiative established in 2000 to solidify and implement the support component of the Innocenti Declaration. GIMS is coordinated by the WABA Mother Support Task Force (MSTF) with the goal of creating an appropriate environment of awareness and support for a mother to initiate and sustain breastfeeding. Another purpose of the GIMS is to identify and link existing Mother Support Groups in different countries while promoting and supporting new ones.
Mother Support, as defined by GIMS, is any support provided to mothers to improve breastfeeding practices for both mother and baby. The support needed varies from woman to woman but generally includes encouragement, accurate and timely information, humane care during childbirth, advice, reassurance, affirmation, hands-on assistance, and practical tips.
A major MSTF activity is the E-Newsletter, published online and started in 2003. It is issued in English, Spanish, French, Portuguese (2005) and Arabic (2011). We welcome articles under any one of the sections (see below) in the newsletter. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
1. Mother Support from Different Sources
2. Mother Support- Breastfeeding Mothers Relate their Experiences
( Mothers can share their breastfeeding and/or their birth experiences. They can share obstacles, how they overcame them, their joys, why they continued to breastfeed, etc.
3. Father Support/Men’s Initiative – If you are a father or a male let us know how you or your organization provided support to the breastfeeding mother and baby.
4. Breastfeeding Information – Breastfeeding Advocate – acknowledge and recognise those who have given and continue to give to breastfeeding, who have promoted, protected and supported breastfeeding in that person’s country, region etc. This can be a meaningful gift to them so please write to us about their contribution and honor them in their work.
Breastfeeding conferences, events in which you have participated and would like to share your experience.
5. Breastfeeding Resources –books, materials, videos, research etc
6. Children and Breastfeeding – what children say about breastfeeding.
7. Grandparents – supporting and encouraging breastfeeding
8. HIV, AIDS and Breastfeeding
9. Websites and Events – send us information about an upcoming event that will include breastfeeding and/or the health and welfare of women and children.