Black Breastfeeding Week 2019 | Richmond, Virginia

September 1, 2019

Black Breastfeeding Week 2019 in the RVA Art District

According to a recent study conducted by researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “black infants consistently had the lowest rates of breastfeeding initiation and duration”. And being that black babies have the highest mortality rates, more than double that of white babies, increasing those breastfeeding numbers could decrease mortality rates by nearly 50%.

There are many reasons as to why racial disparities persist, but one reason is the lack of representation. Let’s get straight to the point, representation matters. If you grow up never seeing imagery of women you can identify with breastfeeding their own babies, then chances are you’d be less likely to try it yourself. We all need to feel connected, inspired, & empowered. Social media can play a role &, through imgery, I can do my part by offering black mothers the opportunity to inspire other black mothers to do what is natural & to let women know that, “your body is enough”

“I breastfeed because I am able to give my baby all the nutrients that she needs and our bond is amazing. Knowing that I can make this happen for her is truly a blessing in its self. I can say that we’ve had a smooth journey so far and we are almost 6 months in. I remember researching breastfeeding videos and articles while I was pregnant to educated myself on it because I am a first generation breastfeeder, so I didn’t have anyone to talk to about it. I knew I wanted to breastfeed and I would do anything to get it right. Even if I had to keep re-latching until we got it, I was determined to do it.”

Kachelle Roark

“My why? Because the blessing of life came from my womb and I believe that same blessing continues with the sustainment of life. What better way to provide nutrients, bond, and most importantly provide love to my child than through the intimacy of breastfeeding? The comfort, security, and peace breastfeeding provides is immeasurable. The health benefits of breastfeeding also motivated me to begin and stay the course. As a working mom, the process wasn’t always easy but it was necessary. I struggled at times but having an amazing support system enabled me to overcome. Ultimately the feeling of knowing I’m supplying my child with “God’s Liquid Gold” is simply indescribable.”

Thalia Bowen

“I breastfeed because I know I’m offering my baby the best thing for her. I struggled the first go around with my oldest daughter, our breastfeeding journey was short lived. I was determined to try again this time and we have met a year earlier this month and are still going. It has been hard at times being a first generation breastfeeding mom. But I like to share with my family to normalize it. Although I didn’t breastfeed long with my oldest daughter, she gets to witness it with her little sister and breastfeeding is so normal to her. I hear her talking to her cousins and friends about it. I often think about what she is learning for the day she becomes a mom.. and how I’ll be there to support her every bit of the way. Legacy.”

Déjené Fisher Young

“My why?

Because not only did I have the greatest blessing of protecting my daughter during her 9 months in the womb, but I’d also have the opportunity to nurture her from my body. The honor to continue to protect her with antibodies and provide her with nourishments from my body is one of the greatest rewards a mom could ask for. Moreover, the bond that we’ve created is something that is truly sacred and one that I will cherish forever.” 

Jade Patterson

“I breastfeed because I am literally my babies’ tree of life. In a day and age where black mothers and babies die at alarming rates, partly due to lack of education and support regarding breastfeeding, I feel obligated and responsible for “each one teach one”. Normalization, education and advocacy for breastfeeding is my life’s goal!”

Tasha Dee

Tasha Dee chose this location for everyone to gather so we could pay tribute to Maggie L. Walker, her statue seen here in this image – a strong black female pioneer in Richmond! She was a teacher, a businesswoman, andthe first American female bank president to charter a bank in the United States.

Tasha, my friend & organizer of this amazing event.

If you have scrolled this far, thank you! Please visit to learn more about why such a week is needed & to check out events in your area.

RVAbreastfeeds has been a champion of a breastfeeding-friendly community in the city of Richmond. Check them out here

A great article by Scary Mommy about why we need a Black Breastfeeding Week

To see last years breastfeeding group photo session, click here

All shot with my Nikon D810 + Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art

Virginia Hampton Roads Richmond Photographer


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