To realize, deepen and share the love and wisdom found in the breastfeeding relationship.
To help mothers worldwide to breastfeed through mother-to-mother support, encouragement, information, and education, and to promote a better understanding of breastfeeding as an important element in the healthy development of the baby and mother.
- Mothering through breastfeeding is the most natural and effective way of understanding and satisfying the needs of the baby.
- Human milk is the natural food for babies, uniquely meeting their changing needs.
- Alert and active participation by the mother in childbirth is a help in getting breastfeeding off to a good start.
- Mother and baby need to be together early and often to establish a satisfying relationship and an adequate milk supply.
- Breastfeeding is enhanced and the nursing couple sustained by the loving support, help, and companionship of the baby’s father. A father’s unique relationship with his baby is an important element in the child’s development from early infancy.
- In the early years, the baby has an intense need to be with his mother which is as basic as his need for food.
- For the healthy, full-term baby, human milk is the only food necessary until the baby shows signs of readiness for complementary foods, about the middle of the first year after birth.
- Good nutrition means eating a well-balanced and varied diet of foods in as close to their natural state as possible.
- Ideally the breastfeeding relationship will continue until the baby outgrows the need.
- From infancy on, children need loving guidance which reflects acceptance of their capabilities and sensitivity to their feelings.
The ideals and principles of mothering which are the foundation of LLLI beliefs are further developed in The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, the most comprehensive handbook on breastfeeding and parenting ever published. It has provided needed answers to three generations of nursing mothers on every aspect of breastfeeding.
La Leche League International is committed to serving everyone inclusive of race, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, physical or mental ability, socio-economic status, political views, gender identity, sexual orientation, family structure, or other protected status. LLLI seeks the equitable accreditation of a diverse body of Leaders.
DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES
LLLI believes that human milk is the natural food for babies and that mothering through breastfeeding is the most natural and effective way for a mother to understand and satisfy the needs of her baby.
LLLI emphasizes that breastfeeding is the natural way of feeding babies, but recognizes that misinformation and social pressures may cause difficulties that require breastfeeding mothers to seek outside assistance.
LLLI offers information, encouragement, and support to breastfeeding women on a mother-to-mother basis to help mothers gain confidence in their natural ability to breastfeed their babies.
LLLI believes breastfeeding helps a mother by enhancing her natural mothering instincts.
LLLI believes that the breastfeeding relationship can stimulate the optimal physical and emotional growth of the child and the development of close family relationships.