A mother in Missouri has donated 65 pints (eight gallons) of her breast milk to nursing mothers that survived Hurricane Harvey.
Danielle Palmer of Owensville had an excess of bottled breast milk ready to serve up to her son, Truett – but when she saw the devastation in Texas she said she knew she had to help out other mothers.
Stress can cause breastfeeding moms to stop lactating, and power outages can spoil frozen milk. Danielle Palmer’s frozen breast milk will prove vital to moms who lost their own supplies during blackouts or who lost their pumps when they were forced out of their homes by Hurrican Harvey – and to moms stressed out by the tragic events.
Danielle said: ‘We have each-other’s backs. We take care of each other,’ Palmer told News 4 of her fellow moms.
‘Breastfeeding is hard. Whether you’re pumping or feeding or however it may be, it’s hard. And we are like momma bears. We protect one another.’ The idea to donate her breast milk came to Danielle after her son Truett was born with a congenital heart problem, among other difficulties.
That meant he had to take most of his nutrition by IV – which led to Palmer’s freezer building up an impressive amount of excess milk in the meantime.
Truett’s speech therapist suggested donating some milk to the mothers and babies affected by the Hurricane Harvey floods, and Palmer said she realized she was the right woman.
Now the bottles – equivalent to eight gallons, and an estimated 364 feedings – is to be taken to Dallas.
Local organization Guiding Star Missouri will drive the refrigerated milk to the city, where it will be distributed to those who need it.
Exchanging breast milk is legal. Breast milk can last for up to six months once frozen, according to BabyCenter.
While serious diseases such as HIV can be transmitted by milk, it is reported that ‘the risk of infection from a single bottle of breast milk, even if the mother is HIV positive, is extremely small.