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Awareness Campaigns

Perinatal Services BC supports health awareness events and encourages health care providers and women and their families to get involved. 

January is Perinatal Depression Awareness Month. The following organizations have resources for pregnant and postpartum women:

The following resources are for health care providers:


Parents of Preemies Day recognizes the strength, courage, and resilience of parents of premature babies. It is on the first Sunday in May.

For more information on premature births and support resources, visit the Canadian Premature Babies Foundation.

In many countries, as many as one in five new mothers experiences some type of perinatal mood and anxiety disorder. These illnesses frequently go unnoticed and untreated, often with tragic and long-term consequences to both mother and child.

World Maternal Mental Health Day is on the first Wednesday of May.

National Multiple Births Awareness Day is held in late May to bring awareness to the challenges that families with multiple births may face and to improve the quality of their lives. 

For more information, visit Multiple Births Canada.

World Breastfeeding Week is August 1-7, however it is celebrated in Canada from October 1-7. It is celebrated in October because it is the 10th month of the year and symbolizes the first week of a baby’s life (after nine months of pregnancy) when a baby may begin to breastfeed.

The #WBW2019 slogan “Empower Parents, Enable Breastfeeding” was chosen to be inclusive of all types of parents in today’s world. Focusing on supporting both parents to be empowered is vital in order to realise their breastfeeding goals. Empowerment is a process that requires evidence-based unbiased information and support to create the enabling environment where mothers can breastfeed optimally. Breastfeeding is in the mother’s domain and when fathers, partners, families, workplaces, and communities support her, breastfeeding improves.  We can all support this process, as breastfeeding is a team effort. To enable breastfeeding we all need to protect, promote and support it. Learn more about World Breastfeeding Week.

The Government of BC has proclaimed October 1-7, 2019 as Breastfeeding Week.  Provincial Proclamation can found here.

Quintessence Breastfeeding Challenge

In October, the Quintessence Breastfeeding Challenge celebrates breastfeeding and milk-banking and demonstrates promotion, protection, and support for breastfeeding women and their families. It’s a chance for education and peer support to be done in a fun social way. 

The challenge is usually held the first Saturday in October of each year to see which geographic area (province, state, or territory) has the most breastfeeding babies, as a percentage of the birthrate, “latched on” at 11 am local time.

Breastfeeding Promotional Materials

These materials promote community support of breastfeeding. For further information on promotional materials click here.

Breastfeeding Guidelines

PSBC has three provincial Breastfeeding Guidelines for the healthy preterm infant, the healthy term infant, and multiple infants.

Breastfeeding Resources

The Breastfeeding My Baby guide is a helpful tool that can be printed and posted in health care facilities to promote breastfeeding, or used with families for individual or group education.

For further information on PSBC'S breastfeeding initiatives click here

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Awareness Day is September 9. The month and day were selected to highlight the nine months of pregnancy which are a time when a women should abstain from drinking alcohol. The day raises awareness about the dangers of drinking during pregnancy and the challenges of individuals and families who struggle with FASD.  

For more information, visit Health Nexus.

Mental Illness Awareness Week is an annual
national public education campaign designed to help open the eyes of Canadians to the reality of mental illness. In 2019, it is October 6 - October 12.

PSBC has the following resources that address mental health during pregnancy:


Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Awareness Month in October is a time to shed light on sudden infant deaths and safe sleeping environments. SIDS is the death of a baby under one year of age which is sudden, unexpected, and without a clear cause. Sudden Unexplained Death in Infancy (SUDI) is the sudden unexpected and unexplained death of an infant where risk factors are present and may or may not contribute to the death.

PSBC has the following resources:

  • Safe Sleep Environment Guideline for Infants 0-12 Months
    This provincial guideline provides health care providers with information about infant safe sleep practices to prevent SIDS.

  • Safe Sleep Toolkit
    Honouring Our Babies: Safe Sleep Cards & Guide is an interactive, education toolkit to help service providers discuss safe infant sleep practices with First Nations and Aboriginal families and help reduce the risk of SIDS and SUDI.

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day is on October 15.
An international wave of light campaign encourages everyone to light a candle every October 15 at 7 p.m. to stand together in remembrance of babies gone too soon and raise awareness about infant loss. It is a day of remembrance for pregnancy, loss, and infant death, which includes but is not limited to miscarriage, stillbirth, SIDS, or the death of a newborn. 

World Premature Day is on November 17. Approximately 15 million babies are born prematurely each year, accounting for more than one in 10 of all babies born worldwide. World Prematurity Day aims to raise awareness for prematurity and the concerns of preterm babies and their families worldwide because infants born preterm represent the largest child patient group. 

For more information, visit the Canadian Premature Babies Foundation.


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