Testimonials about the MILCC Scholarship Funds

Monetary Investment for Lactation Consultant Certification (MILCC) introduces new IBCLCs from around the world who have demonstrated excellence in practice and service in their communities. These MILCC scholarship winners below have passed the exam to become an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), and in return, wanted to say a few words.

Jacquie Nutt, IBCLC

The lactation consultant profession is strengthened and enriched by increasing the number of seasoned practitioners. For this reason, supporting recertifying IBCLCs has become a MILCC priority. It is a pleasure to introduce Jacquie Nutt, IBCLC, from South Africa who works collaboratively with her colleagues to advance the profession.

In her own words:

“I just received my 10 year recertification exam results in the mail, and wanted to let you know that I passed well. Thank you so much to MILCC for providing financial support for the exam, as I would not have been able to recertify without your help. I really appreciate your generosity and that of your donors.

I live in a small rural town, which does not have much scope for helping mothers breastfeed, and what I do, I can't charge for. There really didn't seem any point to continue studying and finding money for books and the exam.

However the very act of entering for the exam has given me another way to use my knowledge. Being inspired by our successful study group (our group all passed well!), I started organising seminars for IBCLCs, exam candidates and other health professionals in Cape Town. It seems to be very much what we all need - a chance to network and to hear local experts in lactation and research, or share our own case studies. We have been reaching doctors, nurses, physiotherapists and dieticians too, so our area of influence is growing, and we have also been able to learn how their specialties overlap with ours.

I feel so relieved to have recertified and thrilled be able to use my skills in some way to help more mothers and babies, even if it's not directly.”

Riva Weissfish

Riva Weissfish from Israel has had a variety of experiences in maternal child health. She has found ways to integrate these learning activities into a service for women in Jerusalem.

In her own words:

“My involvement with lactation started as a doula and childbirth educator. After seeing the need my clients and students had for good lactation help, I realized that I had more to offer to the birthing community. After doing the LEC course, I started to volunteer in Shaare Tzedek Medical Center and field phone calls, from my home, through my "warm line". My CBE courses were given in culturally closed community and, through that portal, I was able to serve this community with lactation services, of which they might not otherwise avail themselves. I continue these activities today, as well as tending to my budding private practice.

I live in Jerusalem with my husband, an editor, and our large family (my first teachers about breastfeeding!). The most important clients I have had, since becoming a new IBCLC, are my two sweet granddaughters.”

Nicole Pogrund

Introducing the 2009 JoAnne W. Scott Scholarship winner and new IBCLC, Nicole Pogrund from Mendocino County California, USA. Nicole is an active La Leche League Leader and works with social service agencies in her community. She continues JoAnne’s tradition of providing volunteer mother-to-mother support.

In her own words:

“I began attending LLL meetings when my son was a few months old and I found answers from my local leader Pamela Duncan and from fellow mothers that I had not been hearing anywhere else. The perspective on mothering that Pamela and the group provided was in total agreement with my instincts about approaches that would work well for my son and I. I began volunteering for LLL in a few small ways, and when my son was 14 months old or so, Pamela asked me if I would like to work toward Leadership. I was really surprised, and deeply honored. I was accredited as a LLL Leader in June of 2003 when my son had just turned 2. I have absolutely loved La Leche League all this time and still do. Mother-to-mother support is just a lovely thing to see in action, and having been a leader for some time now, I have seen how a child's start in life and a mom's in motherhood can be altered profoundly and for the better by participating in La Leche League.

In 2006 I began working as an Americorps worker with my local Public Health Department on a breastfeeding program that they were launching in conjunction with our county's FIRST 5 program. In the past few years that program has developed and I have been working more lately with our local WIC program. I have been extremely fortunate to have been mentored and encouraged by Tess O'Connell, RD, IBCLC who is our WIC Program's breastfeeding coordinator, Linda Nagel, PHN, the director of Maternal Child and Adolescent health at Public Health, and Margaret Turano, my co-leader who also just passed the IBCLC exam! The support I have been given on my path to IBCLC from several community organizations and from many wonderful individuals has been amazing. I feel extremely lucky to have been employed promoting breastfeeding and assisting new moms, as a volunteer for La Leche League, and for a living also! I am thrilled to have passed the exam and I plan to continue my work volunteering for La Leche League and working on breastfeeding promotion and providing direct service to moms and babies which is so much fun.

My very heartfelt thanks go to MILCC for selecting me for this scholarship which has enabled me to earn a credential of which I am so very proud, IBCLC! I am especially honored to be the recipient of the JoAnne W. Scott Scholarship and will endeavor to further her legacy of volunteer breastfeeding service!”