International Breast Milk Project Overflows with Milk

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Quarterly Donation Limits Set Until International Breast Milk Project Raises $160,000 to Expand its Capacity

US baby helps mom prepare shipment of milk for Africa

Unfortunately, we anticipate that IBMP will not be able to accommodate every mom year-round who wishes to help. But, we are committed to mapping out other solutions so that moms with overflowing freezers are not turned away while there are infants in Africa who need it to survive. And it starts with raising $160,000 in the next 90 days.

International Breast Milk Project (IBMP) announced today that their processing partner, Prolacta Bioscience has committed to processing 100,000 ounces of breast milk in 2009 for infants suffering from HIV/AIDS, malnourishment, disease, and poverty in Africa. This 2009 commitment means that Prolacta will accept 315 donors per quarter to meet this year's goal. IBMP expects to reach the first quarter goal this week. This will be the third year of a successful partnership between IBMP and Prolacta.

International Breast Milk Project is an international humanitarian aid organization dedicated to providing life-giving donor milk to infants in emergent need. One of their primary goals is to provide immediate relief for infants in South Africa, where an estimated 1.4 million children were orphaned due to HIV/AIDS in 2007. To date, IBMP donors have provided 162,500 ounces (1270 gallons) of breast milk from 1257 donors for infants in South Africa, enough milk to feed over 1084 premature infants or 270 full term infants exclusive breast milk for one month. IBMP has received numerous awards for social entrepreneurship and innovation.

Thanks to people like Oprah Winfrey, who covered International Breast Milk Project on her show, and Salma Hayek, who recently breastfed a malnourished infant in Africa, the demand to donate milk to IBMP has skyrocketed. Three years ago IBMP had less than 10 donors. Today, the organization receives 400-600 requests per quarter to donate milk, and interest in donating continues to grow. In 2009, IBMP will be open for applications beginning the first day of each quarter, until the application goal is achieved. IBMP is also piloting a program that would reserve a few application spots for moms who recruit 60 friends on Facebook for their cause.

"We are extremely grateful for Prolacta's continued support of IBMP," said Jill Youse, founder and executive director of IBMP. "Unfortunately, we anticipate that IBMP will not be able to accommodate every mom year-round who wishes to help. But, we are committed to mapping out other solutions so that moms with overflowing freezers are not turned away while there are infants in Africa who need it to survive. And it starts with raising $160,000 in the next 90 days."

The $160,000 fundraising campaign will position IBMP financially to find alternatives to collect and process the milk of the projected 400 moms who won't be able to participate this year. Minimum processing costs are estimated to be at least $400 per milk donor. Once fundraising goals are met, IBMP will post a request for proposals from organizations or companies to collect, test, and process milk for the cause.

IBMP is a federally registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization. To help IBMP raise funds to get donor milk to infants in need in Africa, please visit http://www.breastmilkproject.org . You can also support IBMP by following them on Twitter at twitter.com/give milk , joining their cause on Facebook, submitting a brainstorm idea on their website, or by contacting Jill Youse directly at jill at breastmilkproject dot org.

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Frederique Daniel
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