Thursday, February 28, 2013

Support for breastfeeding


Poll: Americans overwhelmingly want more support for breastfeeding at work, in hospitals and in public

More than 60 percent say making it easier to breastfeed is everyone's responsibility.


ATLANTA—More than 60 percent of Americans believe workplaces, hospitals and other public spaces are key to making breastfeeding easier for moms, according to a poll released Thursday by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

The survey of 1,300 people found strong support for the idea that everyone—not only mothers—can help ensure that babies get the breast milk they need to thrive.
The results demonstrate broad approval for specific ways communities can bolster nursing.

Sixty-six percent of respondents, for instance, said it would be "very helpful" for workplaces to support breastfeeding mothers by giving them time and space to pump and a place to store breast milk.

"If we truly understand that breast milk is the best first food for new babies—and our polling shows Americans do—then our institutions and communities need to make it easier for all mothers to nurse," said Dr. Gail Christopher, vice president – program strategy at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

"This data proves that, as a nation, we believe whether a woman breastfeeds shouldn't be dictated by the quality of health care she receives or her work situation," Christopher said. "That's an important starting point for shaping policies that foster healthy beginnings for all children."

The survey's findings were announced at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation's "First Food Forum," a gathering of 150 breastfeeding advocates, maternal and child health practitioners, researchers, writers and others from across the United States, which is being held in Atlanta through March 1.

The poll additionally found:

  • 71 percent of those polled said it would be "very helpful" to have clean, private spaces in malls, restaurants and other public places where women can go to breastfeed their children.
  • 68 percent "strongly agree" that hospitals should be baby friendly (meaning they provide new moms with the support and encouragement they need to breastfeed).
  • 65 percent said it would be "very helpful" to have education about breastfeeding so everyone is more knowledgeable about the benefits of breastfeeding and more accepting of coworkers and women who breastfeed in public.

These figures suggest public support for many of the 20 strategies to improve breastfeeding rates laid out in the 2011 Surgeon General's Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding (

That report highlights several barriers to breastfeeding at work, including pressure from coworkers and supervisors not to take breaks to express milk and breaks with insufficient time to pump.

The survey of American adults by landline and cell phone was conducted Jan. 27 through Feb. 4, 2013. There is a margin of error of +/- 2.9 percent.

The full poll and results are available at You can follow the foundation on Twitter at @wk_kellogg_fdn.

Twitter discussions about the "First Food Forum" are using the hashtag #firstfood13.

About the W.K. Kellogg Foundation
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works alongside communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

5 Reasons Children May Not Ask for Help When Being Bullied

WASHINGTON, D.C.  (February 25, 2013) – Chances are, most people reading this know a child who has stayed home from school this week simply because they were afraid of being bullied – but they may not realize it. It is estimated that an average of 160,000 students each day around the country stay home out of fear of being bullied. Yet many adults, for a variety of reasons, have no idea that the bullying is taking place.
“Children may avoid speaking up about being bullied, which really just helps to perpetuate it,” explains Peter J. Goodman, author of the book “We’re All Different But We’re All Kitty Cats.” “It is important for teachers and parents to know that bullying is taking place so that they can try to address it, but sometimes it is difficult for them to find out that it is happening in the first place.”
Goodman is helping to lay the foundation for bullying prevention in classrooms around the country, where they are using the combination of his children’s book and the accompanying curriculum, “Bully Free Students Make Bully Free Classrooms,” designed for kindergarten to grade three students. The book and educational curriculum have been designed to help young kids understand, prevent, and address bullying.
For those parents and adults who may wonder why their child is not telling them that they are bullied, there are 5 common reasons, including:
  1. They may think that they are tattling on another student, and they have been taught not to tattle. It is important that children learn the difference between tattling about unimportant things and telling an adult when bullying is taking place.
  2. Children may fear retaliation if they tell an adult they are being bullied. While the adult may address the issue with the child doing the bullying, there is going to be another time right around the corner when the adult is not around. Children may fear that things could get worse if the issue is addressed.
  3. Some children feel that they will not be believed. They believe that they will tell an adult and the person will not believe them or will suggest that maybe they did something to bring it on.
  4. Many children believe that telling an adult does nothing to help with the bullying. The research tends to support the notion that many adults don’t do anything about the bullying, or they simply brush it off, tell them to toughen up, or say that it is just a part of growing up. If children learn early on that adults don’t help, then they are not likely to report the incidents.
  5. When children are bullied, they may feel ashamed or embarrassed. This alone can keep them from reporting it, because they don’t want people to know that they were being bullied.
“Around half of the children who are bullied don’t end up telling an adult that it’s happening,” explains Karen Goldberg, child psychotherapist and co-author of the curriculum. “The more we can understand and address the reasons behind them not telling, the closer we will be to helping to solve the bullying problem our nation’s schools face.”
The challenge of children not telling adults that they are being bullied can be addressed and overcome. This can happen through a bully prevention program being in place, as well as parents and other adults talking to children about bullying and the importance of telling an adult when it happens. It is also important that when children do tell adults that it is addressed so that they feel confident in their decision to report it the next time.
The Kitty Cats book and educational curriculum has been written for children in pre-kindergarten through the third grade. The earlier children learn about the importance of preventing bullying, the better. To learn more about the book series, the curriculum bundle, or to purchase the volume that addresses bullying,
About dreamBIG Press
dreamBIG Press is a publishing house that has created a series of children’s books titled Were All Different But Were All Kitty Cats. The books are designed for elementary-school-aged children, to tackle common issues that they may encounter such as bullying, childhood fears, confidence, being different, and making friends. Through the use of a cast of cats, the author helps children better understand those issues, and learn how to deal with them. The company was started by Peter J. Goodman, a multimedia children’s author and president of Gut Instinct Creative, an award-winning marketing communications company. For more information about dreamBIG Press or the book series, visit the site at: or our YouTube channel