Got Milk? B.C. mom answers love-inspired call for breastmilk

Breastmilk provides needed antibodies for babies to fight infections

When Natasha Brenko had her son seven months ago, she quickly learned that breastfeeding was going to be a challenge.

What the Kelowna woman didn’t know, however, was that the solution she found for a short-term problem could one day bring relief to other mothers in worse circumstances.

“When my second son was born he had a tongue tie, and I had to exclusively pump and feed,” she said.

In the first two to three months of pumping, Brenko had produced enough milk to ensure her son was well nourished and then some.

She had an extra 13 litres of breast milk that were immediately packed up and put in her freezer.

In the months that followed Brenko’s son’s tongue-tie was fixed and he was able to breastfeed. She realized that he’s more than able to get the milk he needs to flourish, but there was no way she was going to get rid of her stockpile of “liquid gold.”

View this post on Instagram

Peaches has arrived! On Tuesday, February 12th, at 6pm, we welcomed Bianca Bloom (Peaches) Holmes to the world. She came out with a scream that changed everything and took to mammas boob immediately. – Paola was absolutely amazing, and I am awestruck with the love, passion, strength and calm she showed. – Gratitude doesn’t approach what I’m feeling for the fact that everyone is safe and for all of the kind help we received. A huge thank you to Paola’s mamma Martina who was a rock, our doula Raman who was so wise and so funny, our midwives Laura and Michelle who kept things on track and kept everyone safe, and the team at Women’s Hospital who were so kind and professional. Finally I am so grateful and proud of the Canadian medical system. I truly wish that women and families around the world can receive the same level of support we did. We are blessed. – We love you all, but we will be going offline for a bit while we take time to bond as a family. ❤️

A post shared by Ryan Holmes (@invoker) on

So she reached out to the provincial milk bank, which is at B.C. Women’s Hospital. It’s the only milk bank in the province and provides donor milk to the sickest babies in B.C. across NICUs.

It is also always in need of donations.

READ ALSO: BREAST MILK DRIVE IN THE OKANAGAN

“Many moms who deliver preterm babies do not produce milk right away or have enough, studies have shown that breastmilk provides needed antibodies for babies to fight infections which is critical for preemies,” said a representative from BC Women’s.

To get women in a donating frame of mind they sent out a call to action that tied in to the day of love.

”We were thinking for Valentine’s Day, it would be a good opportunity to remind moms to give something close to the heart: mother’s milk (breastmilk),” said the representative.

Brenko offered her milk before the call for donations because she knows how important it is to be supported during the early days of having a child.

“Parents in that situation are already in a difficult position and if you can take away a little bit of that stress, why not?” she said.

She also said that if she was ever on the receiving end she wouldn’t hesitate to pull from its reserves.

“For me, it’s important to provide breast milk for my children. It’s the perfect meal,” she said.

She also said she was impressed with the screening process she just went through.

She provided medical information and she had two phone interviews. Her doctor had to fill out paperwork and she had a blood test.

She said it wasn’t onerous.

It was, however, extensive and worthwhile.

“The breastmilk is going the teeny tiniest babies in the NICU and it has to be safe for the little babies, and for the parents,” she said.

To find out what’s needed to donate breastmilk, visit http://www.bcwomens.ca/our-services/labour-birth-post-birth-care/milk-bank/donating-milk.

To report a typo, email:
newstips@kelownacapnews.com
.


@KelownaNewsKat
kmichaels@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Province recognizes three Greater Victoria residents for work to combat racism

The three residents were recognized during the Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Awards

Vehicle ends up upside-down in creek along Happy Valley Road

One motorist in care of emergency services

Saanich mayor joins fight to protect local wildlife from rat poisoning after second owl dies

Mayor Fred Haynes to meet with provincial, federal pest control industry representatives

Greater Victoria writer releases first novel inspired by U.S. school shootings

Dear Mr. President tells thought provoking story of victims left behind

Minimum wage goes up June 1 in B.C. as businesses face COVID-19 challenges

The minimum wage jumps by 75 cents to $14.60 an hour on Monday

Protesters prepare to rally against racism in front of Vancouver Art Gallery

Rally is in response to the deaths of black Americans and a Toronto woman

Man dies in ATV accident south of Nanaimo

Incident happened on backroad Friday night in Nanaimo Lakes area

Protesters rally against anti-black, Indigenous racism in Toronto

Police estimated the crowd to be between 3,500 and 4,000 and said there was no violence

Feds earmark $1.5M to support recovery of B.C., Indigenous tourism

B.C. money will be split between Vancouver Island and Indigenous tourism

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Surrey mayor’s party under fire for ‘sickening’ tweet accusing northern B.C. RCMP of murder

Mayor Doug McCallum says tweet, Facebook post ‘sent out by unauthorized person’

Father’s Day Walk Run for prostate cancer will be virtual event this year throughout B.C.

The annual fundraiser for Prostate Cancer Foundation BC has brought in $2.5 million since 1999

Dr. Bonnie Henry announces official ban on overnight kids’ camps this summer

New ban comes after talking with other provincial health officials across the country, Henry says

Most Read