Outreach in Tampa Bay
We are so excited to be part of the Tampa Bay community. As a part of a military family who seems to always be on the go, it is important to me to get involved and be truly engaged with my neighbors and families in each new town. Not only do I feel more grounded in Tampa, but it feels more like home. Trish and I are not Tampa natives, but we definitely feel we have put down roots the more we work with new families in our area.
After more than six years in the Tampa Bay area, I've had the privilege of becoming established in the "birth community" as a lactation consultant. From 2016-2017 I was an active member of the Hillsborough County Breastfeeding Task Force as their Secretary. Their mission is to improve breastfeeding initiation and duration in Hillsborough County by overcoming barriers to breastfeeding by supporting, promoting, and protecting breastfeeding in Hillsborough County. In 2015 the Task Force hosted the 2015 Big Latch On, which was a great success-113 babies latched at the same time! Check out a couple of pictures from the event.
When I first launched Sweet Songs Breastfeeding I was lucky enough to team up with Sarah Rocrou of the lovely Birthmarks. Sarah's vision was to bring a holistic approach to health, life, pregnancy and birth. Sweet Songs fit in just right! In August Trish and I attended the Prego Expo with Birthmarks and met dozens of soon-to be mamas in the Tampa Bay area. There was immense interest in identifying options for lactation support in the Tampa Bay area and we were so happy to share all of our offerings at Birthmarks. Since they closed their doors we are now happy in our new home at Totally Chiropractic in Lutz. We are right next to the Labor of Love birth center where we host our monthly support group. Follow us on Facebook for days and times each month; we have a fabulous group!
One of the other projects that we are excited to annouce is our new offering of lactation services at The Alpha House of Tampa. Through the money raised in my Lactation Fund, we gave our first breastfeeding class to the women in September and then began hosting a quarterly latch clinic to remedy any breastfeeding issues. These pregnant women and mothers in crisis need and deserve access to lactation care. Breastfeeding is vital to the health and well-being of both mom and baby, but it is also a financially sound decision during a tumultuous time in their lives. We look forward to working alongside these women as they begin their motherhood journey.
We recently had a vendor booth at the Tampa Bay Birth Network's 2016 Natural Birth and Baby Expo. We enjoyed our time meeting lots of pregnant women and new families in our community. We know our donation to the raffle went home with a happy mama. We also loved chatting it up with many of our wonderful birth community partners. Did you go? We hope you came by and said hi if so.
Contact us if you'd also like to get involved in our breastfeeding community!