The BFREE Team, based in Steven & Alexandra Cohen Children's Medical Center (CCMC), was one of 9 teams awarded a grant by the New York State Department of Health to lead breastfeeding/chestfeeding and lactation support initiatives throughout Nassau and Suffolk County. Our team has experience promoting breastfeeding through Long Island from our work with our prior 6-year grant, Creating Breastfeeding Friendly Communities, from 2017 to 2023. We also have prior experience promoting breastfeeding/chestfeeding in clinical practices through our New York State Department of Health grant from 2011-2016 addressing pediatric obesity prevention.
We will improve lactation education and support through pregnancy, the period following childbirth, and early childhood in our priority communities on Long Island in order to help families meet their breastfeeding/chestfeeding goals and reduce racial, ethnic, and community differences in breastfeeding/chestfeeding rates.
We hope for a majority of parents in the communities we work with to continue breastfeeding/chestfeeding for a minimum of 6 months, with a notable percentage doing so exclusively.
Our Priority Communities
Babylon Southampton Hempstead
Glen Cove Islip Shinnecock Reservation
Promote evidence-based lactation education/management
Support mothers in meeting their lactation goals
Establish policy and community support for breast/chestfeeding
Increase breast/chest feeding initiation, exclusivity, and duration within the selected communities
Increase the number of Breastfeeding Friendly health care practices and worksites
Implement breast/chestfeeding and lactation support in community and public spaces
Develop new and expand our existing lactation support groups
Build and expand our collaborative cross-sectional coalition in support of breastfeeding/chestfeeding