Baby Cafe Bakersfield is proud to be a recipient of the IBCLC Care Award and to be the ONLY licensed Baby Cafe location in all of California! We help breastfeeding families meet their own goals. Whether you are pregnant, nursing, or weaning, we are committed to helping you and finding you the answers you need. Our IBCLC Team (Mary, Adrienne, & Christine) works tirelessly to remain updated on the latest evidence-based information and to stay connected with the global community of lactation support to keep our community's breastfeeding support at the top of its game!
Professional IBCLC Care is available during open drop-in times at Baby Cafe: on Tuesdays and Fridays from 10am to 1pm. International Board-Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs) are thoroughly trained in human lactation, certified to have thousands of hours of clinical experience, and ethically bound to provide evidence-based and holistic care to breastfeeding families.
Many of the families who come to Baby Cafe for breastfeeding help are experiencing complex issues such as slow weight gain, pain during breastfeeding, infant fussiness or reflux symptoms, anatomical and structural issues affecting breastfeeding, and the low milk supply which can result from any of those problems. We listen to their stories, we hear their frustrations and pain, and we offer gentle, compassionate counseling. We share our knowledge, discuss options for improving their breastfeeding situations, and create pathways for learning so they can self-educate and empower themselves to advocate for their children. Perhaps most importantly, we offer a safe space to share so that new families can hear from experienced families that there is hope and a light at the end of the tunnel. Some have shared their breastfeeding experiences in written form and they will soon be published as case studies.
IBCLCs are also trained in infant development, so in addition to providing a scale for parents to monitor their infant's weight gain over time, we also provide support as we observe developmental milestones in their babies and toddlers. Recognizing signs of readiness to begin feeding solids, addressing changes in sleep patterns, and tracking acquisition of motor development skills are just some of the ways we assist families by providing education and reassurance.
We have helped many new mothers transition back to working outside the home and recently added evening drop-in sessions to accommodate mothers who are unable to attend during the day. Frequently, parents bring their older children, and many of our brand-new mothers attend with their partner at least the first time to ensure they have someone to help them hear all the education. We welcome pregnant women with questions about how to start out breastfeeding with optimal practices and offer help to mothers with previous breastfeeding difficulties or unintended early weaning. Our community of mothers have built a strong network to support each other, often sharing tips on expressing milk, recommendations on breastfeeding tools like breastpumps, and leaning on each other whenever new motherhood becomes a bit overwhelming.
At Baby Cafe Bakersfield, we are also proud to be actively training 3 potential IBCLC exam candidates. April, Leslie, and Martha are lactation educators (45 hours of training) who have also completed an additional 45 hours of lactation education on their journey to the Board exam. All 3 are accumulating clinical experience by observing and assisting our IBCLC team at Baby Cafe.
Mothers are referred to Baby Cafe Bakersfield by all of our local hospitals, by pediatricians and OB/GYNs, by practitioners at Kaiser Permanente, by midwives, by doulas, by La Leche League Leaders, and through word-of-mouth.
View a photo by visiting www.facebook.com/babycafebakersfield!
Baby Cafe drop-ins are free to attend. Baby Cafe Bakersfield is operated entirely on in-kind donations and volunteer services. Expansion of current services will be dependent upon sponsorship and/or other funding opportunities.