ISLAMABAD (APP) - A weeklong drive of mass awareness and advocacy will be lunched by the National Alliance for Promotion of Breast-feeding from August 1st throughout the country. Global Breast-feeding Week is celebrated every year from August 1 to 7 in more than 120 countries to encourage breast-feeding and improve the health of babies around the world. During the WBW 2009 rural areas would be targeted through the Lady Health Workers for promotion of breast-feeding in communities. Other key stakeholders such as parliamentarians, media and health service providers will be mobilised to take special initiatives to raise awareness during this BF week. In order to jointly celebrate the week The Network for Consumer Protection organised a preparatory and planning meeting of National Alliance for Promotion and Protection of Breast-feeding here on Wednesday. Communication Specialist, UNICEF Sheeba Afghani said that civil society should keep an eye on the violations of Breast-feeding Ordinance. While explaining the objectives of the Breast-feeding Week she said that the basic aim is to mobilise action and promote networking and collaboration between those who are working to encourage breast-feeding even in emergencies. She said children are among the most vulnerable groups during emergencies, and small children are the most vulnerable of all, due to increased risk of death from diarrhoea and pneumonia. She said during emergencies, unsolicited or uncontrolled donations of breast-milk substitutes might undermine breast-feeding which should be avoided. Health Education Advisor, Nutrition Wing, Ministry of Health Yaqoob Qureshi said that mobilisation of Lady Health Workers (LHVs) for promotion of breast-feeding is very crucial as they are the delivery agent at the household level. Dr. Siham Sikander from Human Development Research Foundation said that only eight- percent infants at six to eight months are exclusively breast-fed in Pakistan. He added that low literacy rate, lack of awareness, cultural practices, psychological distress undermining capacity and poor implementation of Breast-feeding Ordinance are the main causes of low rate of exclusive Breast-feeding. Waqar Ahmed, Executive Coordinator The Network said that as part of emergency preparedness, hospitals and other health care services should have trained health workers to help mothers particularly encouraging them for breast-feeding and overcoming other difficulties. People hail BISP as safety net to poor The most deserving recipients of Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) have appreciated the government for initiating this pro-poor programme which has provided them some relief from the inflationary pressure. Most of the deserving families expressed joy over the relief programme, adding that this programme is very helpful. People who are receiving this stipend paid great tribute to Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhatto and said that she still lives in the heart and mind of them. A resident of Bahara Kahu Shahinsha who is also a beneficiary of the programme said that this initiative of the government is very fruitful specially for the poor and lauded the BISP officials for utmost transparency. He said that several families getting relief through this programme, adding that it will reduce the problem of the poor to some extend. A social worker Ubiadullah Nawab said that BISP is one of the best programmes.