Pregnancy is one of the most difficult things a woman can experience. However, the challenges don’t end after birth. Sometimes new mothers discover they can’t produce enough milk or none at all. This common occurrence can cause anxiety and feelings of failure. Every mother should have the support and the milk depot at Tri-County Health Care helps them make milk donations.
Minnesota Milk Bank for Babies
Labor and Delivery Supervisor Sarah Riedel has managed milk donations in partnership with Minnesota Milk Bank for Babies. The Golden Valley based organization provides donated milk to mothers in need. Tri-County Health Care is a donation site and Sarah is an Internationally Board Certified Lactation Consultant responsible for receiving donations. Since the start of the milk depot, Riedel has overseen donations from all over Minnesota. She knows from firsthand experience how important it is for newborns to receive breast milk.
Naomi Horn: 1,660 ounces
The milk depot received 5,080 ounces of donated milk in 2020. 1,660 ounces came from a single donor. Naomi has three children and knows how important good milk is for a growing baby. She was always blessed with an abundant supply of milk, so much that she threw out excess milk with her first two children. She vowed to do things differently with her youngest, Moriah.
Naomi experienced many issues feeding Moriah; she wouldn’t take the bottle. After four months of trying different bottles, nipples, and temperatures, Moriah finally took the bottle. Naomi produced so much milk in the meantime that she filled two large freezers. Not wanting to waste any milk, she contacted Tri-County Health Care and Sarah Riedel for assistance. In only a few months, she saw her donation drive away. Since she donated so much, a representative from the milk bank personally came to her home and picked up the donation.
“It’s liquid gold,” said Naomi about her milk. With her third child, she didn’t waste a drop. She discussed the pressure on women to produce milk. She wants to remind everyone that raising children is a delicate process, and if you can’t produce milk, that doesn’t mean you’re a bad mother. Services like the Minnesota Milk Bank for Babies exist to help. Naomi also encourages mothers that produce excess milk to donate. She described donating as incredibly rewarding and an opportunity to be a part of something bigger than yourself.
How to donate
If you find that you’re producing excess milk, it may be wise to consult a doctor before donating. After that, contact a donation site like Tri-County Health Care. After filling out the paperwork, a representative from the milk bank will contact you for a phone screen. From there, you will provide health history information and go through testing. After approval from the milk bank, you will be given a donor number. This donor number needs to be placed on the milk container. The last step is to schedule a date with a drop off site.