Help us share donor breast milk safely, and reduce the barriers to receiving donor breast milk, nature's original food source for babies.
MMNZ are here for all babies be that; premature, sick, immune compromised, adopted, fostered, surrogacy, healthy full term babies, babies with feeding issues and mothers who are unable to breastfeed due to; insufficient glandular tissue, Contraindicated drugs such as Chemo or radiation therapy or antidepressants, mothers who have had a mastectomy or breast trauma/injury, or mothers whose milk is just slow to start and just need a helping hand in the first few weeks till their own supply catches up.
MMNZ have established a Virtual Milk Bank throughout New Zealand, connecting donors to recipients and sharing milk safely using blood screening to test blood for viruses that can pass through the milk and asking the donors to fill out a lifestyle screening questionnaire.
We are seeking funds to assist donors with the cost of their blood tests. These tests can cost between $180-255. MMNZ have secured a discount, however the tests cost us either $100 or $150 depending on the labs we are using, which is still costly. MMNZ have recently (August) received grant funding for some areas of the country covering 1/3, the other 2/3s are unfunded. The tests need to be redone every 3 months depending on how long the donor can donate for. We are also seeking funds to assist us with our day to day admin costs, freighting milk across the country, and to support our wonderful volunteers who support our donors and recipient parents.
As well as raising awareness on the benefits that mothers milk has for babies, we aim to lobby the government to fully support donor breast milk "as the next best thing to a mothers own milk" (WHO) by funding the blood tests. Donor breast milk will improve the health outcomes for those who are unable to provide breast milk for their own baby's and support those who are partially feeding with their own breast milk. Ideally donor breast milk should be the first step before Formula is offered, and we believe we can make donor milk an option for all NZ babies, with enough support.
By increasing the access to breast milk the health outcomes for the nation will raise, increasing immunity at such an early age is one way. Breast Milk decreases the chance of; Obesity, Asthma, Diabetes and cardiovascular disease to name a few, and lays the foundation for a health gut microbiome. By starting off with the human specific milk, we can save ourselves $$ in the future.
MMNZ is a unique Milk Bank, we are the only organisation that freights donor milk throughout the country for the community and we assist premature babies in NICU's when requested. MMNZ assist Whanau to gain access to breast milk for their babies and aim to break down the barriers to breast milk by providing this service.
Our new donor Karlee 24 September 2021
Our newest donor Karlee is a second time donor for us, we are lucky to have her extra milk. As this is Karlee's third baby she knew she would have an over supply again, so Karlee started expressing colostrum before her baby was born and carried on collecting colostrum - natures liquid gold, and transitional milk (shifting from dark orange to golden yellow moving through to creamy white) and now milk. Her milk will go to an immune-compromised baby or premature baby as her blood tests were all clear and negative.
We are so blessed to have Karlee and donors like her, that are able to set aside some time each day to express for another person in their community, the true definition of altruism.