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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - Journal of Global Initiatives
Title Exclusive Breastfeeding Practices of Mothers in Duakor, a Traditional Migrant Community in Cape Coast, Ghana
Volume 8
Issue 1 & 2
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2013
Page numbers 87-102
URL http://digitalcommons.kennesaw.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1152&context=jgi
Ensuring child health and well-being is critical in Ghana’s development. Central to initiatives
for ensuring child health is the World Health Organization’s (WHO) recommended
exclusive breastfeeding, which is increasingly being promoted in Ghana. As the name
connotes, the practice requires that babies from age zero to six months are breastfed. This
practice is however interpreted and practiced differently in line with the traditional mode
of feeding babies in most communities in Ghana. This paper presents the findings of a
study that examined how mothers breastfeed their babies in the first six months at Duakor,
a traditional migrant community in Cape Coast, Ghana. The study involved 48 mothers
and data was collected through semi-structured interviews. Among others, the study
found that friends’ ways of feeding were influential in the way mothers fed their babies.
Significantly, traditional feeding habits, such as giving babies water and porridge were
found in the migrant community. The study further discovered that an exclusive breastfeeding
practice among mothers in Duakor was far from ideal as recommended by the
WHO. The study therefore recommends the need for intensive sensitization education
and culturally sensitive infant feeding initiatives, taking into consideration traditional
homeland feeding practices.

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