This week’s CHEER Champion of the Week is Linda Jackson, BS, Peer Counselor II for Mississippi State Department of Health’s (MSDH) WIC Breastfeeding Program. She was nominated by her supervisor, Andrea Borda, SB, CLC, for her 20 years of outstanding service to the MSDH WIC Breastfeeding Program! Linda began as a Peer Counselor working from home in 1999 and became a Peer Counselor II working in clinics and hospitals in 2000.
“I love to encourage mothers, help them understand the benefits of breastfeeding, and see them enjoy breastfeeding their babies,” Linda shares. “I get joy when a mother comes to the clinic or calls to let me know that she is comfortable and will continue to breastfeed her baby due to me taking the time to help and support her.”
As a Peer Counselor II, Linda covers one of MSDH’s largest areas in their central region II. Her duties include: educating the community about breastfeeding and Baby-Friendly; counseling and supporting prenatal and postpartum WIC clients; providing individual breastfeeding education in WIC clinics, hospitals, homes, and/or by phone; issuing breastfeeding devices; completing monthly inventory reports; and teaching postpartum breastfeeding classes at CHAMPS hospital Merit Health Central. In addition, Linda teaches breastfeeding classes twice a month at a local obstetrician’s office, Central Mississippi Health Services, whose patients deliver at Merit Health Central, and she supports the SIPPS Baby Cafe held at Mississippi Roadmap to Health Equity, Inc.
Like many breastfeeding counselors, Linda’s personal experience inspires her to help others.
“My knowledge about breastfeeding’s benefits and my first-hand experience with breastfeeding my own children for a total of 36 months motivates me to want to encourage as many women as possible to breastfeed,” Linda says.
Congratulations, Linda, and thank you for your many years of service helping mothers and babies have the best start in life!
CHEER Champion of the week
Each week, we will recognize a CHEER Champion for all the work they have done for CHEER (Center for Health Equity, Education, and Research)/CHAMPS (Communities and Hospitals Advancing Maternity Practices).