Monday, January 25, 2010

HMBANA collects mothers' milk to go to Haiti

I learned this evening that the Human Milk Banking Association of North America is now partnering with the Red Cross and the U.S. Navy to provide human milk from U.S. donors to Haitian babies. It will be used in the NICU of the U.S.S. Comfort, a Navy hospital ship that is providing emergency medical care to Haitians. HMBANA's supplies are low right now (much like many blood banks around the country, having seen a drop in donations over the holidays), so by becoming a donor to HMBANA you can help supply both U.S. and Haitian infants with mothers' milk! Guidelines for donors, and info for who to contact, are here.

(Note: To my understanding, HMBANA is partnering with the International Breast Milk Project for this effort. If you know anything about IBMP, this may not matter to you, or may make you hesitate. My feelings on IBMP are complex, and complicated by recent unverified info that they are no longer working with ProLacta at all. To me, this alliance with HMBANA is a good sign and if nothing else, means that anything that's not sent to Haiti will at least be processed and distributed by a non-profit milk bank in the U.S.)

Here's a story about aid efforts from the Dominican Republic:

Inside the station, volunteers huddle around a table and make a human assembly line packaging rice into smaller, manageable bags.

“These people have nothing and literally are donating the clothes off their backs,” Sylvie says, pointing to the boxes of clothing, non-perishable food and medicine.

At the hospital, nursing mothers who had no money donated bottles of their own breast milk. And by Saturday, 25,000 Dominican Republic pesos (about $725 Canadian) had been collected for medication and for gasoline for the caravan.

No comments: