Malnutrition is responsible, directly or indirectly for about one third of deaths among children under five. Well above two thirds of these deaths, often associated with inappropriate feeding practices, occur during the first year of life.
Celebrated annually from 1 to 7 August, World Breastfeeding Week is marked in more than 170 countries to encourage breastfeeding and improve the health of babies around the world.
Breastfeeding is the normal way of providing young infants with the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development. Virtually all mothers can breastfeed, provided they have accurate information, and the support of their family, the health care system and society at large.
Colostrum, the yellowish, sticky breast milk produced at the end of pregnancy, is recommended by WHO as the perfect food for the newborn, and feeding should be initiated within the first hour after birth.
WHO recommends exclusive breastfeeding until a baby is six months old, and continued breastfeeding with the addition of nutritious complementary foods for up to two years or beyond.
The Brussels based United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe - UNRIC provides information on UN activities to the countries of the region. It also provides liaison with institutions of the European Union in the field of information. Its outreach activities extend to all segments of society and joint campaigns, projects and events are organized with partners including the EU, governments, the media, NGOs, schools and local authorities.
United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe (UNRIC Brussels)
Residence Palace, Rue de la Loi/Wetstraat 155, Block C2,7th and 8th floor, Brussels 1040, Belgium
Tel.: +32 2 788 8484 / Fax: 32 2 788 8485