Whāngai Ora Milk Bank
Whāngai Ora Milk Bank was established to collect and distribute safe human milk from donor mothers within the Manawatu, Tararua and Horowhenua districts. Premature pēpi are their priority if a mother's own milk is insufficient or unavailable, but they occasionally have enough milk to give to older babies in the district.
The organisation has received two grants from the Sargood Bequest. One was specifically allocated towards providing free lactation consults to recipients with the aim of enabling them to maximise their own supply and not travel this journey alone. The second grant has enabled the purchase of a new freezer and contributed towards a new pasteuriser.
As milk banks are not common throughout New Zealand, the trustees are excited to support Whāngai Ora's future goal of expanding the Milk Bank model around the country so other regions are able to support their own communities in the same way. While other countries have milk banks available, they charge for the milk as there are substantial costs associated with screening donors, testing and pasteurising the milk, and getting it safely to recipients. These costs make pasteurised donor milk worth close to $200 per litre! However, Whāngai Ora provides this free of charge as they believe that safe, pasteurised donor milk should not cost the whānau of the pēpi that require supplement feeding.
Learn more at: whangaiora.org.nz