Washington, DC (PRWEB) October 02, 2012
International Babywearing Week is an opportunity to help focus the world's attention on “babywearing,” a term coined by pediatrician and author Dr. William Sears and his wife Martha Sears. Babywearing simply means carrying a baby or young child on one’s body using a cloth baby carrier. Not only does babywearing allow parents to have both hands free while carrying their children, but research is also shedding light on how this practice has numerous benefits for children and their caregivers.
A study published in the journal Pediatrics in 1986 found that 6-week-old babies carried at least three hours a day in a soft carrier cried and fussed 43 percent less than others overall, and 51 percent less in the evening hours. Another study, published in the journal Child Development in 1990, found that mothers who were given cloth carriers at birth were more responsive to their babies and had babies who were more securely attached than mothers who received plastic infant seats.
“International Babywearing Week is a great opportunity to bring awareness to the benefits of babywearing, and to celebrate the longstanding tradition of carrying infants and small children while attending to daily tasks,” explained Ann Marie Rodgerson, president of Babywearing International, Inc., the nonprofit organization that initiated the week-long celebration.
"This year's theme is ‘Carrying on Traditions’ – it’s a chance to look at traditional methods of carrying children, and look at the new traditions we are creating in our own families,” said Rodgerson. “Anthropologists have posited that a baby sling was one of the first tools developed by early humans to care for children while hunting and gathering. There is a long history of babywearing around the world, but in modern societies it is seeing a renaissance as parents see the convenience and comfort babywearing brings to their children. Western carrier manufacturers have adapted traditional carriers from around the world to make them appealing to a modern and urban society, but wearing your baby on your front, back, or hip comfortably, safely, and successfully, can be a challenge as we’ve lost the traditional knowledge of babywearing. Those wanting to learn this skill can seek help from experienced babywearers like the Volunteer Babywearing Educators of Babywearing International, or from other babywearing groups around the world.”
The theme "Carrying on Traditions" is being celebrated by groups around the world with activities such as carrier sewing labs, babywearing walks, fashion shows, photography exhibits, and babywearing workshops to raise awareness of the benefits and tradition of wearing infants and small children. Babywearing International, Inc. will also be hosting contests on Twitter and Facebook as well as on their blog.
At the international level, presenting sponsors Babywearing International, Inc., and TheBabywearer.com are coordinating the International Babywearing Week awards to recognize excellence in babywearing advocacy and education. International Babywearing Week is funded by OnyaBaby, Britax USA, Sakura Bloom, and Ergobaby.