World Breastfeeding Week & Big Latch On Waikato

World Breastfeeding Week 2017

The international theme for 2017 is SUSTAINING BREASTFEEDING TOGETHER

World Breastfeeding Week 2017 celebrates the link between breastfeeding and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), an international blueprint for global commitment and action towards equitable development, transforming our world by 2030.  

Over the week we'll post stories and tips about breastfeeding at work on our Waikato DHB Facebook page, and on this page.

(Scroll down for Big Latch On event information)

Breastfeeding: A Key to Sustainable Development

In front – the families are: Jessie Tafaese and Dolly Te Uira with baby Mikaire Te Uira (hours old); and  Melissa Faaosofia with baby Aaron (17 days old).

Behind are: Margaret Fletcher, Lactation Consultant & Clinical Midwife Specialist - Lactation; Nicole Johansen – student midwife; Michelle Sutherland,  Director Women’s & Children; Rawinia Hohua, Administrator Te Puna Oranga (Māori Health); Amerit Kaur – registered nurse; Ellie Griffiths - midwife; Kelly Spriggs, Manager Te Puna Oranga (Māori Health); Anna Graham – registered nurse;  George Yoon - SHO; Britta Gombocz - SHO; Samrose Directo – registered nurse ; Sue Hayward, Chief Nurse and Midwifery Officer. 


  • Breastfeeding is important in supporting the healthy growth and development of all babies into healthy, intelligent and successful adults. 
  • Breastmilk is a 'natural and renewable food' that is environmentally safe and produced and delivered to the consumer without pollution, packaging or waste.  It requires no electricity, fossil fuels, or transport costs.
  • Breastmilk only is all the nutrition a baby needs for the first six months of life - no water or other fluids.
  • Knowledgeable support of mothers to initiate and sustain breastfeeding of their babies for two years and beyond offers significant health benefits for both mother and baby and increases confidence.
  • People in the community are educated to to see breastfeeding, timely complementary feeding (after six months), and continued breastfeeding for up to two years and beyond as the healthy choice and the cultural norm.
  • Infants are unable to make a choice and we all have a duty to protect them.  Apply the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes, as promotion of these products undermines breastfeeding and the best first food. 
  • Promote paid parental protection policies that are gender equitable, encompass the family unit and that support co-parenting and breastfeeding. Work with employers to promote 'family friendly' practices.
  • Breastfeeding rates within our communities are kept at high levels - keep breastfeeding on the agenda of leaders and policy makers.

More information about this year's theme

Find a Big Latch On event near you!

Use the Big Latch On Participating Venue finder here(external link) - for all locations within Waikato, more being added all the time.  There are also some in Taumarunui see here(external link).  Or participate with a selfie here(external link).

Big Latch On events will begin at about 10am - this allows for the women and their babies to settle at the venue.
Note: Most events are on Friday 4 August,  but some are on Saturday 5 August.
The Big Latch On time is at 10.30am - the requirements are that babies are latched on for a 2 minute period at this time and the numbers are checked and counted by two independent adjudicators (identified by the person registering the event).

The Big Latch On 2017

So come and join us!
All you need to do is arrive at 10am and prepare to latch your baby to the breast in time for the 'count' at 10.30am.

You are welcome at any of the events listed.
Most events will offer a hot drink and perhaps something else.

About Big Latch On

The Big Latch On is an event which involves women gathering together at registered venues to breastfeed and to offer peer support to the other breastfeeding women in their community.  Family, whānau, friends and breastfeeding supporters from the community also attend the events to support and promote breastfeeding. Individuals and community groups volunteer to organise and host Big Latch On venues across the country.

The Big Latch On was started by Women’s Health Action in 2005.  The event is now a worldwide peer support, community development event aiming to strengthen national and global support for breastfeeding, to improve the health of children around the world, last year there were Big Latch On events held in 31 different countries.

Find out more(external link)