Please donate breastmilk

If you’re uncomfortable donating breastmilk directly to a recipient, please consider donating to a milk bank like the Mothers’ Milk Bank in San Jose. According to their website, they have been-

a licensed tissue bank that has been providing milk banking services for over 30 years. Since 1974, over 4000 donors have provided over 1.5 million ounces to help babies survice and thrive.

They are a non-profit milk bank but do charge a $3 per ounce processing fee to recipients. (And herein lies our biggest issue with milk banks since $3 per ounce for a growing baby adds up quickly to become unaffordable for many families.) Most insurance companies will cover the cost of banked milk if it is deemed medically necessary- so definitely worth a discussion with your physician and your provider.

One consideration about milk banks is that they do screen and pasteurize the breastmilk donations. They have stringent donor screening, including blood tests, and therefore this may be preferable for an at-risk baby.

Either way, please consider donating breastmilk that your baby doesn’t need. Another baby would certainly be better off with it, whether you donate it directly to another baby or to a milk bank.

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breastmilk sharing… on TV’s Pregnant in Heels

I have only ever seen clips of this show here and there. Love the sound of a pregnancy concierge, although I imagine I would quickly make my family bankrupt if I had access to such. And anyone, isn’t the non-pregnant person of the couple making this new life the pregnancy concierge by default? Just saying. 😀
Anyway! From the impressions I gleaned through the few clips I’ve seen, I was very surprised to see this clip where the concierge has been hired by a mum to find a wet nurse!

What do you think? Would you use a wet nurse? And would you hire a pregnancy concierge?

FAQs

What or who is the cooperative?
The cooperative was founded by two Bay Area mamas who saw a need for a space where those interested in breastmilk sharing could connect and stepped in to fill it. At varying times we’ve had members assisting in running it but mostly it’s just the two of us. Although we do consider everyone who’s participated a member! 😀 More about us here.

Do I have to join?
Well, no. If you participate in the cooperative in any way, you’re pretty much in. The goal is to provide a space where folks can learn more about and participate in breastmilk sharing.

How does it work?
It differs a little depending on whether you’re looking to donate or receive breastmilk but basically you post an offer or request on our facebook page and then coordinate with responders to arrange pickup. A more detailed description can be found here.

What if I can’t or would rather not post to your facebook page?
We still take requests the old fashioned ways- via email or phone. We need certain details however, so read this post first please.

How can I get in touch with you directly?
All our contact info is here.

Do you screen the milk or the donors?
Nope. We’re not a milkbank. Just a couple of moms trying to connect those who want breastmilk with those who have extra to giveaway. We also think you’re the best person to decide what’s best for you and your baby. So we encourage you to screen donors to the level you’re most comfortable with. We do recommend that you ask some questions about your donors health and created a screening form that you can download to use as is or base your own questions on.

Why not just encourage folks to donate to or obtain milk from a milkbank?
We do. You should do whatever you’re comfortable with. More on that here.

How can I pasteurize donated breastmilk?
There are a couple methods that you can do at home or you could buy a kit like this one.

What blood tests would you recommend for donors?
Basically, we go with the Human Milk Banking Association of North America’s recommendations. You can see a complete list here.

Is there any other way that I can get a breastmilk donation?
Yes! You can get breatmilk donations or donate breastmilk through any of these fine organisations:

Eats on Feets
Human Milk for Human Babies
MilkShare
San Jose Milk Bank

Where can I learn more about breastmilk sharing?
Human Milk Bank Association of North America
Modern Milksharing
Only the Breast
Eats on Feets Resource Guide
Milkshare

This list is always growing. If you have a question you’d like to see answered here, please leave a comment or drop us a line!