Ayr United players showed off our new ‘Breastfeed Happily Here’ trackside board at Somerset Park recently. Alison Thewliss MP also came along to meet the players, Breastfeed Happily Here peer supporters, local mums, children and babies.
Earlier this year Alison Thewliss MP wrote to all football clubs in Scotland to ask them to consider declaring their stadiums as being breastfeeding friendly. Ayr United Football Club is the first Scottish football club to sign up to a breastfeeding support scheme by signing up to our Ayrshire Breastfeed Happily Here initiative.
Alison Thewliss MP said:
“By making a positive declaration that their stadium and grounds are breastfeeding friendly, clubs like Ayr United are letting people know that breastfeeding is normal and need not be a taboo issue.”
“Football crowds have changed a lot over the years and stadiums are becoming a much more family friendly environment. The vast majority of clubs understand the need to build future generations of fans and it’s great to see clubs like Ayr United getting the message out there that they welcome families and breastfeeding mums.”
Our campaign is a way to make sure that business owners, employees and members of the public are aware of the Breastfeeding etc. (Scotland) Act 2005, which means that it is illegal to stop a mother feeding her baby breast or formula milk in premises where the public has general access.
To join the scheme, a business must ensure that its employees are aware of the scheme and the legislation. They then agree to display the Breastfeed happily here sticker to let all customers know that breastfeeding is welcomed on the premises.
Ruth Campbell, Consultant Dietician in Public Health Nutrition said: “Breast milk gives babies the best possible start in life. It helps protect them from infection and diseases such as ear and chest infections and tummy upsets. Long term, it means children have a lower risk of diabetes and obesity later in life. The longer a mum breastfeeds, the more health benefits there are for mother and baby.
“It is great to see Ayr United leading the way by taking steps to change perceptions about breastfeeding in public.”
If you would like to find out which venues have signed up to the Breastfeed happily here campaign, or you are a business owner who would like to display a sticker, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Breastfeeding Network Facebook page, ‘Breastfeed happily here Ayrshire’ has the latest news of venues that have signed up, pictures and stories from breastfeeding mums around Ayrshire, and a link to give feedback on the initiative using Survey Monkey.
If you are a mother looking for breastfeeding advice and support, you can visit https://www.breastfeedingnetwork.org.uk or call National Breastfeeding Helpline on 0300 100 0212. The Breastfeeding Network also runs free groups every day across Ayrshire where you can receive support and information.
Photo: Elayne Murphy with Anna (2 years old), Fiona McLean with Noa (2 years old), Julie Peterkin, Breastfeed Happily Here Peer Supporter, Declan McDaid, Alison Thewliss MP with Kirsty (3 years old), Craig McGuffie, Elliot Stirling (6 years old), Sarah Edwards from Breastfeeding Network (BfN)