The Milk Bank in Indiana will extend services beyond the donation of mothers’ breast milk, which has been its mission for nearly 12 years. In doing so, the organization can provide more ways to help mothers and infants in need.
The bank is the only donor human milk bank in Indiana with more 40 depot sites across the state where women can give their milk to help infants staying in hospitals. An average 27,000 ounces of milk are dispensed every month at The Milk Bank.
Executive director Janice O’Rourke says the bank will expand lactation services as a way to give back to the community.
“If there is a mom out there that is having issues with breastfeeding and is just unsure of how things are going they can call us,” says O’Rourke.
Women can meet with one of the bank’s three certified lactation consultants. O’Rourke says they would also like to start lactation support groups.
Lauren Duncan is The Milk Bank’s donor mother coordinator. She says the organization also wants to reach more women who have lost a baby and want to donate through their bereavement program.
“It’s a way for moms to work through the grief, still have a connection with their baby,” says Duncan.
In addition, newly purchased equipment allows the bank to stop processing the milk by hand.
The first week in August marks World Breastfeeding Month and The Milk Bank will be holding events throughout the state.