HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Breastfeeding Hawaii, a nonprofit organization promoting breast milk for newborns, is seeking local support for donations and awareness for keiki in need.
The organization projects the opening of its two shipping supply sites on Oahu and Hawaii Island by June 30.
According to Le’a Minton, the board president of Breastfeeding Hawaii, mothers with medical conditions, recent surgeries, or difficulties producing milk depend on donations.
“If the babies or moms have certain medical conditions, then they can always ask for a prescription from their physician to get pasteurized donor human milk and that would be shipped in from a milk bank on the mainland,” Minton said.
The concern, however, lies in the efficiency, accessibility, and expenses of access to donor milk.
Currently, 90 percent of keiki in Hawaii do not exclusively receive breast milk, causing medical complications and costing the state over $44 million, according to Minton.
Following the organization’s first steps of opening shipping supply sites across the islands, the group hopes to become a milk distributor for efficient local distribution.
Eventually, Breastfeeding Hawaii aims to open their own human milk donor bank to generate income for Hawaii, and ease accessibility to breast milk for others.
For those interested in donating call (877) 375-6645 for a brief interview.