Oldham facility accredited with UNICEF Baby Friendly award - again!

Date published: 16 March 2020

An Oldham-based service, leading the way in transforming care for children, young people and their families has been accredited with UNICEF Baby Friendly Award - for the second time!

The innovative, integrated Right Start team offers a range of services to pre-school children and their families, including health visiting, children’s centres, support for children with additional needs, oral health and the Family Nurse Partnership programme.  

Provided by Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (Bridgewater) on behalf of Oldham Council, the service received the Baby Friendly Award in recognition of the passion and commitment to work which encourages early relationship building and promotes breastfeeding.

UNICEF representatives spent several days auditing the service on staff knowledge and skills, in addition to interviewing local families in the area about the care they received.

Incredibly 100% of mothers reported that the staff were kind and considerate, whilst 95% of people who accessed the service confirmed that all of their needs had been met.

Anne Woods, UNICEF Deputy Programme Manager for the Baby Friendly Initiative, said: “Our assessors all reported that the centres were welcoming and friendly with breastfeeding clearly welcomed throughout.

"They observed a number of groups and activities which were clearly helpful, informative and fun for parents and babies with all the displays in the centres being informative, colourful and on message.

“We were delighted to highly commend the Right Start 0-19 Service for presenting documents which effectively underpin the Baby Friendly standards.”

Joanne Mayall, Bridgewater’s Infant Feeding Specialist for the Right Start Service, said: “The service is naturally delighted with the feedback received and look forward to continuing to support breast feeding mothers and their families in the best way possible."

Baby Friendly is a worldwide programme from the World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF which was established in 1992 to encourage maternity hospitals to implement the ‘Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding’ and has subsequently had the principles extended to include health visiting and public health.

In 2012, the Baby Friendly standards were updated to include parent infant relationship building, early child development and enhanced communication skills for staff.

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