Dr. Shacchee Baweja
IBCLC, MBBS, DCH, IYCF
August 20, 2018
I had read and heard a lot about ILCA conferences. When I received a partial scholarship for the conference this year in Portland, I eagerly accepted it. I have been diligently saving for it for the last 2.5 years! My first impression when I reached the conference venue was that it was a very well organized huge event, little did I know that there were many surprises waiting for me in the coming days.
This conference was very different from any other conference that I had attended in the past. There was so much love, passion, encouragement and openness. I had come to the conference expecting to learn about lactation and hoping to network with my colleagues from different parts of the world. I did all that and I learned much more about life as well! My learning came from the talks as well as from my interaction with various professionals: lactation support people/ birth support people/ cranio-sacral therapists etc.
I learned about bias, inequity, and privilege. I learned what being inclusive means. I got a chance to hear success stories of some communities and also got the privilege of listening to trials and tribulations of certain others. After many sessions, I wanted to hug the presenter! Imagine my surprise when on the first day of the conference I came face to face with Ms C W Jenna! I was so happy to meet many more of my idols: Ms Alison Hazelbaker, Dr James McKenna, Dr Neils Bergmann etc were there. It was like a Madam Tussaud's kind of experience for me where I could be with my favorite celebrities as much as I want! To add to my joy, everyone was so gracious and welcoming. I got a chance to listen to them, to talk to them and also to click pictures with them!
I made many friends over these 4 days. It is so much fun talking to people you share common passion and ideologies with. You connect instantly. I was happy to connect instantly with quite a lot of them. I got a chance to participate in a few events by the “Equity Team.” Again, it was a big learning experience. This whole conference was such an amazing experience that I want all my Indian lactation field colleagues to experience it. I felt all of us deserve to be there. I / we raised the issue of how impossibly expensive this conference is for majority of Indian lactation professionals a few times, and I got tremendous support from the attendees as well as the ILCA Board.
We ( ALPI) organized a mehendi party for our ILCA colleagues as thank you and it was very much appreciated by people. The tie dye scarves which we gave as gifts were a huge hit! Last but not the least, I got a chance to carry our Tricolor in the “Parade of Flags” even. That was my most favorite part of the conference!
P.S. I have already started saving for any future conference that I can attend!
ALPI is a socially focused organization working towards providing breastfeeding support and education. Our aim is to promote and provide skilled lactation care, to protect breastfeeding through WHO code adherence and policy development. In order to do so, we are partnering with other breastfeeding-focused groups to work in synergy with medical and paramedical professionals involved in the care of breastfeeding families.
The purpose of the conference during WBW is to hear from different professionals involved in the care of breastfeeding families. We will share experiences, concerns, ideas, barriers, and define common integrated points of action to continue improving the support throughout India. ALPI sees breastfeeding support as a puzzle, where different pieces come together to form a whole picture. The result is incomplete if one piece is missing, but all the pieces create a beautiful picture. We hope you will join us to discuss how to support breastfeeding families TOGETHER.
Together: An Integrated Approach to Supporting Breastfeeding Families
Sunday, August 6
10 am- 4pm
TNAI Auditorium, Green Park, New Delhi
To register for the conference please:
1) Go to the ALPI website and enter your information:
2) Email your details to:
We look forward to supporting breastfeeding families TOGETHER. Thank you!
Dr. Shacchee Baweja, Dr. Priya Shashank, Ms. Camilla Conti and Ms. Dana Hardy