A grand opening celebration and ribbon-cutting ceremony were held on August 6 for the nation’s newest Baby Café, located at 301 Washington Avenue in Albany.
Funded by grants held by St. Peter’s Health Partners (SPHP) Community Health Programs, and in affiliation with nonprofit organization Baby Café USA, the new SPHP Baby Café at the Baby Institute provides pregnant and breastfeeding mothers a comfortable environment to learn more about breastfeeding.
The grand opening took place during World Breastfeeding Week, which runs from August 1st to August 7th and kicks off National Breastfeeding Month. The goal is to highlight the huge benefits that breastfeeding can bring to both the health and welfare of babies, as well as to nursing mothers.
“We are thrilled to launch this newest Baby Café, which will offer community support for breastfeeding women in Albany, and enable them to breastfeed for longer,” said Erin Sinisgalli, director of SPHP Community Health Programs. “Long-term studies of breastfeeding show it contributes to a lifetime of good health for babies, including obesity prevention. It also provides many positive health benefits for moms, and gives them some quiet time to relax and bond with their baby.”
Open from 10 a.m. to Noon every Tuesday, the SPHP Baby Café at the Baby Institute is a space where mothers can share tips and techniques, and socialize with other moms. FREE one-on-one breastfeeding assistance is also available from certified lactation specialists and peer counselors.
The Baby Café is one of three Baby Cafés supported by SPHP in the Capital Region. The other sites are located in Troy at the CEO Community Resource Center at 2328 5th Ave., and at the Phyllis Bornt Branch Library and Literacy Center in Schenectady. An additional site will be opening on August 29, during Black Breastfeeding Week, in Schenectady at the Mont Pleasant Branch Library, followed by another site at 169 Mohawk Street in Cohoes.
Pregnant women, breastfeeding moms, partners, and siblings are welcome at all Baby Cafés.
Health care providers who wish to volunteer or participate in the Baby Cafés should contact Kristin Lynch at SPHP Community Health Programs at 518-459-2550.
Baby Café USA
Baby Café is a national network of free breastfeeding drop-ins, combining the expertise of skilled practitioners and mothers to offer invaluable support to parents at all stages of breastfeeding in a professional but non-clinical, café-style environment.
Baby Café USA has more than 45 drop-ins around the United States, in 14 states, supporting more than 2,000 moms every year. All Baby Cafés are free, and are open to all those interested in any aspect of breastfeeding – mothers, partners, supporters – and take place in community venues. Baby Café USA was established in 2011.
St. Peter’s Health Partners Community Health Programs
St. Peter’s Health Partners Community Health Programs collaborates with healthcare providers, school districts, businesses, public health stakeholders, and communities to improve the health and well-being of patients and community members. Through several grant-funded initiatives, it offers programs that provide support and encourage healthy eating habits, improved physical fitness, breastfeeding, and tobacco dependence treatment.