"Mom Pod" provides comfortable, private space for nursing mothers in Taney County

TANEY COUNTY, Mo. -- Many moms know the struggle of finding a private and comfortable place to nurse or pump. However, a new mobile nursing station in Taney County is helping with that problem.

At the Taney County Health Department, health officials say breastfeeding has many health benefits for both the mother and the child. That's why they're providing breastfeeding support for local families.

"Babies breastfed for six months have three times fewer ear infections," Breastfeeding Peer Counselor Wendy Faulkner said. "Women who breastfeed lower their risk of breast cancer."

Faulkner's job at the health department is to educate and encourage families about breastfeeding.

"There are lots of benefits for moms and babies," Faulkner said. "If they don't have support at home with breastfeeding, a lot of times that really sets mom up for failure."

That's why the department strives to support nursing moms through things like their new Mom Pod.

"There might be like a porta-potty, but to go in and try to nurse a baby or pump or even change a baby, that's not really the ideal place to do that," Faulkner said.

The Mom Pod is a mobile, private space for breastfeeding mothers at public events throughout Taney County. It's also equipped with diaper changing stations.

"Dads [can come] in and changing babies," Faulkner said.

However, the Mom Pod is just one way parents who choose nursing can get help. Area health departments also offer classes and counseling.

"Support is important to make breastfeeding successful. If that support is not there, you're not going to see a long term breastfeeding relationship," WIC Division Manager Tammy Drake said.

Breastfeeding support is offered at local health departments for families who are in the WIC program and those who are not. If that's something you're looking for, just contact your local health department.

Area events or organizations that would like to have the Mom Pod set up and staffed at their event, please contact the Taney County Health Department.