• WHO set aside the breastfeeding week to encourage breastfeeding and improve the health of babies around the world.
• This year, the week is being celebrated under the theme; Empower Parents, Enable Breastfeeding.
Garissa mothers have been urged to boost their babies' growth by breastfeeding them exclusively for six months.
The call came on Friday as the county joined the rest of the world in celebrating World Breastfeeding Week.
The World Health Organization set aside the week to encourage breastfeeding and improve the health of babies around the world.
Speaking at Bura Subcounty Hospital when he presided over the launch of the week, Fafi subcounty Health ministry official Issak Mohamed highlighted the importance of breastfeeding in preventing sickness and stunted growth among children.
He said, "A child that has been breastfed for up to two years develops extremely well and is very intelligent. Mothers should exclusively breastfeed their babies, within one hour after birth until a baby is six months old.
His views were backed by Shamat Yusuf, the county director of nutrition, who said nutritious complementary foods should then be added while continuing to breastfeed. This, she said, would prevent unnecessary deaths of babies.
Speaking on behalf of partners who support nutrition interventions in the county, Unicef's Nicholas Kirimi said research has shown that babies who are exclusively breastfed acquire optimal immunity and get the best start in life.
The launch was also attended by local area leaders among other health partners.
Edited by R.Wamochie