Issue 37, October 2016
Celebrating the LLLI 60th anniversary


Mothers’ Stories:

Mom to Mom:

What’s Cooking?

The seven mothers who founded LLLI in 1956 believed that a baby’s wants are a baby’s needs. At a time when infant feeding (and all baby care, in fact) was strictly scheduled, the Founders largely ignored the prevailing social attitudes of the day to follow their instincts in birthing and breastfeeding their babies.

Sixty years later, those radical ideas, at the core of the LLLI mission, have stood the test of time and are now passed on to mothers worldwide as a valid part of general public health care information. Teresa Pitman pays tribute to the Founders of LLLI in her examination of how their once “crazy” ideas have since become widely accepted.

A highlight of the 60th anniversary celebrations is the creation of a special movie, How They Built A Legacy—In Their Own Words, which will be showcased at our online conference next April. In the movie, LLLI Founders Marian Tompson, Mary Ann Kerwin, and the late Mary Ann Cahill talk to New Zealand Leader and journalist Lisa Manning about their work, their relationships, and hopes for the future. Breastfeeding Today is delighted to present a sneak preview to whet your appetite! Watch it at the end of 60 Years Later: Celebrating LLLI.

Marian Tompson, one of the seven LLLI Founders, continues to travel on a passionate journey to support mothers and babies, one that began with her own commitment to breastfeeding. An excerpt from her book charts the path this led her to take.

Liberating Motherhood by Vanessa Olorenshaw was published last month and this excerpt, introduced by its author, looks at the connection between breastfeeding and economics and the value of mothers.

In celebration of the 60th anniversary, Christiane Engel painted the lovely image of mothers and babies joining hands around the globe to illustrate the nature of LLL mother-to-mother international support. Wishing LLLI a happy birthday, too, Alison Blenkinsop and Tessa Clark honor our organization with a song and a poem each has written for the celebrations.

Author Hilary Flower provides an honest look at breastfeeding during pregnancy and feeding two after the birth of a sibling, and she shares her own story that led to her writing the LLLI classic, Adventures in Tandem Nursing.

In the second part of our series on starting solids, Katja Leccisi answers some of the questions most commonly raised about how to start offering first foods to your baby.

If you are caught in a disaster or emergency and breastfeeding, you don’t have to worry about whether you have clean water or refrigeration or access to formula to ensure that your baby gets the nourishment—as well as protection from disease—he needs in the midst of chaos. Breastfeeding is a life line.

“When hospitals begin to use donor milk, the awareness and the importance of breastfeeding increase and more women breastfeed.” We report on the opening of The New York Milk Bank.

There are some tips from mothers for stretching family finances and, as always, in our collection of stories, mothers sharing personal experiences, which is the heart of our support. Why not tell your story on Breastfeeding Today?

Hope you enjoy reading Breastfeeding Today! Please share it with anyone else who might do.


Barbara Higham is the managing editor of Breastfeeding Today. She has been a La Leche League Leader since 2004 and lives in the spa town of Ilkley, West Yorkshire, in the north of England. She and Simon have three children, Felix (18) who has just left home for university, Edgar (14), and Amelia (11).