Asked for It:
New and Improved LLLI Breastfeeding Conference
Every LLLI Conference evaluation form is reviewed by the entire Conference Team. Serious consideration is given to every suggestion. By keeping the best of what Conference participants enjoy and by improving other facets, the Conference Team has made changes to meet the diverse needs of participants. Attendees cross generations, speak various languages, and come from different disciplines. At the same time, the needs of families and children are a high priority. Many changes have been made in the format and session schedule to accommodate requests.
1. Several workshops will be offered after the World Assembly and before Opening Night. These will include Communication Skills including working with employed mothers, Public Relations, Advocacy, Breastfeeding and HIV Issues, and an Exploration of Personality Types. This will allow participants to attend the Workshops without having to miss Conference sessions.
2. The Exhibit Hall Reception will also be held before Opening Night. Conference attendees will be able to discover the latest in breastfeeding and parenting items and enjoy light refreshments as well.
3. Two breaks have been scheduled on Sunday and Tuesday from 2:30-3:30. Conference registrants will have the chance to visit the bookstore, walk through the exhibit hall, or simply take a much-needed rest.
4. In addition to the traditional Opening General Session on July 3, we added another General Session on July 5th. This will provide the opportunity for all participants to be informed and inspired by the same presentation.
5. A common request on evaluations has been a reduction of the noise level at sessions.
Several options for keeping the noise level down are being considered. Babies, children, and even mothers and fathers are tired by the end of the day. Instead of additional sessions, evenings will feature events that lend themselves to happier children, i.e., The World's Fair, The Gala Gallery Reception, and the Closing Event and Dinner. Award presentations have been moved from lunches to general sessions. Lunch will be served before the speaker presentation thus reducing the noise level of meal service.
6. The ever popular World's Fair will be held the second night instead of the third so that those selling materials from around the world will have the opportunity to do so earlier in the Conference. The PIZZAZZ Team is eagerly working on a floor plan that will make it easier to navigate as you get your "passport" stamped and walk around the LLLI world.
7. The Gala Gallery will replace the many separate receptions of previous Conferences. It will be an opportunity for LLLI departments, countries, and areas to meet in one centralized place. As requested, this will allow more time to network and visit.
8. The Conference Closing has been moved from the afternoon to the evening of the last day. The Closing Event and Dinner will be included in all full Conference registrations.
9. Many past Conference attendees have said that the highlight of the Conference was meeting with the Founders of LLLI. To make this happen, not only will the seven Founders be featured at the Afternoon Tea, but they will also host a Founder's Parlor. This area will be in an informal section of the Alumnae Room where small groups will be able to chat with one or more Founders.
10. Also new for this Conference will be a Father's Lounge-the result of attendee suggestions.
11. Many evaluations speak to the international nature of the Conference. To help make the atmosphere friendly to those outside of the host country, many traditions will be continued.
The Alumnae will again host a welcome table for new attendees and for those who have traveled from another country. Press Releases in English, French, and Spanish will again be available in the PR Room. Simultaneous Interpretation will be done in Spanish, Chinese, and Japanese. This is done with headsets on different frequencies.
12. A room has been set aside especially for the Spanish-speaking community. It will be called The Latino Room and will be an enticing place for all who want to learn more about the Hispanic culture.
13. The main reason people give for not attending the LLLI Conference is expense. Those who attend other conferences are almost always impressed by the high quality and relative cost of the LLLI Conference. The Conference Team is intent on holding the costs down as much as possible. In fact, at this Conference, LLL Leaders will be offered a special low registration. And with Leader Registration only, the cost of the Afternoon Tea will be included.
14. The Conference Team received a $15,000 donation to be used to fund Leader scholarships to the LLLI Conference. In the past, scholarship expense was billed to the cost of the Conference. The donation will afford many more Leaders the chance to attend.
15. Other donations totaling $1,600 will make it possible for ten Peer Counselors to attend the Conference for one day.
A Note about Recommended Speakers: We have received a large number of Speaker evaluations and many new speakers will present topics. However, there are reasons why recommended Speakers may not appear on the Speaker List. Some Speakers are too expensive, others have prior commitments, and some offer topics that would be repetitive. Please be assured that every Speaker who is recommended is given consideration.
Plan to attend LLLI's Breastfeeding Conference in Washington, DC, USA, July 2-5, 2005, Breastfeeding: An Ancient Art---A Modern Miracle.