Area mothers will soon be able to help out other mothers in need when it comes to the formula shortage. Recently, the St. Francois County Health Center announced that it is partnering with The Milk Bank and will become a Breast Milk Depot.
Previous to the announcement, the closest Milk Depot to St. Francois County was in St. Louis. This is the first Milk Depot in the southern half of the state. The purpose of a Milk Depot is to let mothers who may be producing more milk than needed to give to communities in need.
While donating breast milk directly to a person may not be the safest option, The Milk Bank takes all milk that is received and ensures that the milk is safe for babies' consumption by pasteurizing and testing the milk's sterility before it's bottled and sent to hospitals, individuals, and outpatients.
If anyone is interested in becoming a donor, according to The Milk Bank, it takes on average just over a month before being approved.
The first step is to fill out a prescreen form online at https://www.themilkbank.org/donate-milk/#contactform or at 317-536-1670 in order to speak to a donor coordinator. Anyone interested in can also contact the WIC department at the SFCHC at 573-431-1947 ext. 2.
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WIC Coordinator Cate Reando said that while this site is strictly for donations, it is possible to get milk from The Milk Bank if a mother needs it. Going online, one can request milk online at https://www.themilkbank.org/individuals and find information there on how to get milk individually.
Mothers can donate either one time, or can donate multiple times as needed, according to Reando.
Danielle Thurman is a reporter for the Daily Journal and can be contacted at email@example.com or 573-518-3616.