Learn all about our vision for a comprehensive lactation center that aims to serve our most underserved populations.
We envision an environment where new parents across the Commonwealth will have a plethora of IBCLCs to choose from and their choices will be from a diverse and vibrant professional community. We also envision an environment where everyone has access to this important care regardless of their ability to pay.
We aim to increase access to clinical lactation care for our most underserved populations and to increase the number of IBCLCs of color in Massachusetts. By opening a clinic day for MassHealth parents, we can give access to respectful and thorough clinical care at no cost. The new office will allow a physical space for mentorship and future planning. Our clinic days will provide a space for our mentorship program to thrive and the office will be a welcoming space for all.
From Kira Kim, IBCLC, Founder and President:
Until recently, I was the only black IBCLC in private practice in the Commonwealth; over 10,000 square miles with one black private practice provider. It has been lonely and being the only practitioner available for families that wanted an IBCLC that they could feel comfortable with has been both a joy and an immense weight to carry. At the end of 2022, I was happy to see that I had company!! There are still only a few of us though and there is still very little representation for non-English speaking parents and for other minority families in private practice.
There are burdens on the other side of lactation care as well, for struggling new parents. Socioeconomic status makes access to critical clinic care out of reach for many families. Masshealth is the only provider that flat-out refuses to reimburse for clinical lactation care, leaving parents scrambling to figure out how to make things work.
I am constantly trying to find ways to do pro-bono consults and partake in mentorship. However, I book an average of 45-50 appointments a month! I hope to open a clinic for Mass health parents so that I can bring on more practitioners and we can give these families access to the clinical care they need. This will also allow me the bandwidth and help that I need for mentorship. The more hands, the better!
The original plan was to open a lactation clinic and mentorship program in the Spring of 2023, with a pilot year until 2024. After consulting with a non-profit professional, I was told that the clinic would likely do better and be more organized if I filed for non-profit status first and then did a pilot year.
I didn’t expect to be starting a non-profit this year, but here we are! After hours of paperwork, we received our non-profit status in February and are officially a 501c3!!
Be on the lookout for more information. The Board and I are busy drumming up policies, procedures and by-laws and getting the ball rolling on fundraising. We will be thinking about dates as we settle all the fine print. I’m so grateful for all of your support.
Send us an email to get on the mailing list for updates on our progress!