February 23rd, 2017
Amref Health Africa has opened a lactation room today in partnership with Alexander Forbes Kenya, which decorated and furnished the room. “I would like to really thank Alexander Forbes and the Amref Health Africa Kenya Country Office team. The Amref Health Africa Kenya Country Office team provided the room required, and Alexander Forbes was generous enough to fully equip the room,” said Amref Health Africa Group CEO, Dr Githinji Gitahi. He noted that the room was admirable due to its privacy, cleanliness and a proper storage facility.
“We should not preach water and drink wine,” stated Dr Meshack Ndirangu, the Amref Health Africa in Kenya Country Director. “Our work revolves around mother and child, and it should start with us. I am glad that we have finally taken the crucial step of setting up the lactation room as it also reflects an aspect of credibility and accountability of our work. We are making Amref Health Africa a mother and baby friendly workplace.”
Rosalyn Mugoh, the Head of Division – Employee Benefits at Alexander Forbes, expressed her excitement over her company’s role in preparing the room. “Amref Health Africa gave Alexander Forbes an opportunity when we were still a very small company. Today, we are here to show gratitude and state that we do not take this partnership lightly and that we are looking forward to continue working together,” she stated.
The opening of the room is also in accordance with the Kenya Health Bill 2015.
It is in our plans to also implement the same in all Amref Health Africa Country Offices. We also want to take a step further and incorporate nursing stations where mothers can bring in their babies, leave them at the station with a nanny, and get to see them any time throughout the day. All these are to encourage a close bonding, and best practices, for mothers working in Amref Health Africa,” asserted Dr Githinji.
Joachim Osur, the Amref Health Africa Director of Regional Programmes and Field Offices, and a specialist in Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health, also explained the importance of breastfeeding in brain development. “Research has shown that breastfeeding affects the growth and development of the brain, in turn, affects school performance. Additionally, research has also shown that children, who were exclusively breastfed, have a lower risk of acquiring non communicable diseases compared to those who were not. We cannot overstate the importance of exclusive breastfeeding,” he explained.
Amref Health Africa staff present during the launch could not hold back their excitement and cheered as the Group CEO cut the ribbon and officially opened the lactation room.
By Michelle Dibo