Saturday, August 4, 2018




Dozens of moms participate in Big Latch On

Hungry kids with their moms and even a dad or two

CARMEL – Dozens of Putnam County’s breastfeeding moms from both the eastern and western sections of the county travelled to Carmel Fire Department headquarters Friday and participated in the Big Latch On.

The annual event is an opportunity to support and promote breastfeeding that attracted thousands of women from around the globe who simultaneously breastfed their infants and toddlers at hundreds of locations from Calcutta to Carmel.

 Putnam’s “Big Latch-On” was hosted by the Putnam County Department of Health.

A similar program was held at Orange Regional Medical Center in the Town of Wallkill.

Putnam County Supervising Public Health Nurse Rebecca Wittenberg welcomed the women describing the latch on “as the single most important thing a mother can do. Breastfeeding provides a proper balanced diet after millions of years of evolution to suit the needs of an infant. Data unequivocally indicates that children who are breastfed do better from a health point of view.”

Wittenberg reported that Putnam County has “one of the highest breastfeeding rates in the New York State. State health officials hope to increase breastfeeding around New York to 80 percent. In Putnam, the number already exceeds 88 percent.”

Erin Minieri of Carmel, a teacher in the Carmel School District, breastfed her daughter, Katherine. “It’s the most natural and nourishing way to feed my little girl.”

For Tara Varghese of Putnam Valley, breastfeeding her nine-month-old daughter Vivian was a “beautiful experience. I encourage breastfeeding to all moms,” said Varghese.

Those in attendance were also informed about New York’s first Breast Milk Bank that recently opened in Westchester.

The organization provides safely pasteurized donated breast milk to premature and sick infants in addition to donor milk to adopted and foster babies, babies born in LGBT families, infants born through surrogacy and full term and older infants.

Those seeking additional information are asked to call 212-956-MILK.


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