PARENTS

Myleene Klass Backs Save The Children Campaign: 'Breastfeeding Could Save 95 Babies An Hour'

14/08/2014 16:47 | Updated 22 May 2015
Myleene Klass backs Save the Children campaign: 'Breastfeeding could save 95 babies an hour'

Celebrity mum Myleene Klass is backing a campaign to convince more new mothers to breastfeed instead of formula-feeding their babies.

Aid agency Save the Children said 95 babies could be saved every hour if mothers around the world breastfed immediately after giving birth.

The TV star and singer went to the Philippines on a fact-finding mission and says she became even more convinced about the benefits of breastfeeding.

In a first-person report for the Mirror, the 34-year-old mum of two, wrote: "I breastfed my own two daughters, Ava, five, and Hero, who is 23 months old, so it is a subject I have strong feelings about.

"Standing in a slum house in the Philippines, I was holding and crying with a woman I had only just met. As a mum myself, I felt so much for Vilma because she has lost one of her children.

Myleene Klass backs Save the Children campaign: 'Breastfeeding could save 95 babies an hour'

"I met Vilma in the slum of Paranaque City, where she lives in a one-room home with her three surviving children.

"Vilma, 20, told me her baby died because he got sick. He was raised on formula milk. Her older children are malnourished and stunted, and they were raised on formula milk too.

"Vilma didn't know that if babies receive colostrum - the mother's first milk - within an hour of birth, it will kick-start the child's immune system, making them three times more likely to survive killer diseases such as pneumonia and diarrhoea.

"Many babies die of pneumonia in the Philippines but if they're breastfed in the first hours, the mother is giving her baby vital antibodies to fight it.

"The fact I have grown up in the UK has given me the knowledge of what my children need. But over in the Philippines people don t have that knowledge - or the facilities to even boil water. It is humbling and shameful.

"It made me angry because in Britain mums argue amongst each other and point the finger about whether to breastfeed or bottle feed.

"We have a choice. She didn't even have the information."

Save the Children s report, Superfood for Babies, is published today. It is calling on the Government to use its G8 presidency in June to fund breastfeeding nutrition work. To donate to the charity, call 020 7012 6400 or visit Savethechildren.org.uk.

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