in the WIC program environment, and in information technology. Three panels, each followed by group discussion, reviewed these changes, covered lessons from other public health campaigns and programs, and provided input on future directions for the WIC breastfeeding campaign.
As he turned over the podium to the next speaker, Pérez-Escamilla thanked the planning committee, speakers, and IOM staff for their contributions. He also noted that the workshop sponsors at USDA/FNS gave the committee the freedom to organize the workshop as it saw fit and provided useful guidance when necessary.
Presenter: Douglas Greenaway
Douglas Greenaway, president and chief executive officer of the National WIC Association (NWA), lauded USDA’s decision to enlist the IOM Food and Nutrition Board to assist in sorting out the challenges and opportunities associated with offering meaningful support to WIC program administrators and staff. He also expressed his appreciation to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for its leadership and dedication in supporting and promoting breastfeeding and also to NWA professionals for their commitment to achieving breastfeeding success for WIC mothers and their infants.
Families who turn to WIC for nutrition assistance are vulnerable and at risk; meeting their nutritional needs is an essential priority of the WIC community and of NWA. NWA represents 12,200 service provider agencies and the more than 9 million mothers and young children participating in the WIC Program. NWA serves as an education arm and advocacy voice on Capitol Hill; before the USDA and other federal agencies; and with the White House, stakeholders, and collaborating partners.
Greenaway said that NWA supports, promotes, and encourages breastfeeding as the first and most important form of infant feeding in order to improve the overall health and nutritional health of WIC mothers and infants. The association recently released a comprehensive national breastfeeding strategic plan for the WIC Program, accompanied by a blueprint with six steps to achieve WIC breastfeeding goals (NWA, 2011). (Several panelists summarized aspects of the plan and the steps later in the workshop.) Greenaway said that it is NWA’s desire for WIC to be known as the “Go-to Breastfeeding Program.”
Greenaway offered feedback from NWA members on the current Loving Support campaign as a new campaign is being considered. He relayed their comments that “the branding has been terrific and is widely recognized” and that the materials are attractive, of professional quality, and