A Lifeline for Disadvantaged Families

The Variety Cares Breast Pump program is providing women facing financial challenges with the resources they need to breastfeed their newborns

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For low income women and their families, the costs associated with a newborn can seem daunting. When you add the deeply emotional stress that comes with having a premature or sick baby in the BC Women’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), you have a perfect storm of challenges.

Cue the Variety Cares Fund.

For four years, the Fund has supported the NICU Breast Pump program at BC Women’s, providing women in financial strife with a free electric breast pump. A breast pump can be an incredibly powerful tool for a mother and her baby facing this challenging time in their lives.

Through our partnership with the Variety Cares Fund, the NICU has seen higher success rates of breastfeeding for the mothers of premature and sick newborns and reduction in stress for financially disadvantaged women and their families. The result? Healthier mothers and healthier babies.

The need for breast pumps is greater than ever, and thanks to the Variety Cares Breast Pump program, women and their families are able to access this essential tool when they truly need it.

The BC Women’s NICU is the province’s main hub for the delivery of critical neonatal care for up to 1, 700 of the tiniest and sickest newborns. Newborns who receive breast milk spend less time in the hospital and have less chance of being readmitted to the hospital in their first year of life. They are also less likely to develop health conditions like diabetes and asthma when they are older.