Mothers’ Milk Bank News & Information

Austin readers, please join me in cheering on the work of this critically valuable organization for our community’s babies and beyond!

The Mothers’ Milk Bank at Austin is celebrating their new digs this week with a house-warming party on Thursday evening, March 25th,  from 5 – 7:00 pm. Hors d’oeuvres and wine will be served.

Their new facility features three state-of-the-art pasteurizing labs, a drive-thru Milk Drop for milk donors, a meeting room where groups can gather, and expanded office space for staff.

New Address: 2911 Medical Arts St., Suite 12 (in Medical Arts Square), Austin, TX 78705

For those of you that read Attachment Mama from out-of-state, and a few that are even reading now from Canada, Ireland and Australia, I’m sorry you won’t be able to join our Milk Bank celebration — but I think you might appreciate this post anyway because of the interesting information to be gleaned about milk banks in general.

Since choosing the Mothers’ Milk Bank at Austin (MMBA) as our beneficiary for the Sweet Songs children’s album (due out Mother’s Day – stay tuned for details!), I continue to learn more about milk banking’s life-saving service.  The following information and attached photos come straight from the MMBA rock star communications and development team.

Did you know? (I did not)

It is standard practice for hospital neonatologists to strongly encourage mothers of preemies to breastfeed or express their milk for tube-feeding their very small babies, but fewer than half of mothers of premature infants are able to do so. The Milk Bank provides safe donor human milk to preterm and ill infants in the hospital and to sick babies at home.

The Mothers’ Milk Bank at Austin is a non-profit organization whose mission is to accept, pasteurize, and dispense donor human milk by physician prescription, primarily to premature and ill infants. These babies are more likely to acquire life-threatening infections if fed formula instead of human milk. The most common infection, necrotizing entercolitis, can damage the intestines so severely that many babies who acquire it will die. The remainder face life-long complications. Preemies fed human milk – either their mother’s own or pasteurized donor milk – are largely protected from this devastating condition.

In addition, families that adopt newborn babies can also receive donated breast milk.

Milk Bank milk photoMothers that Donate Milk

Milk bank donors are healthy, conscientious women who care about the health of babies. They are most often nursing their own infants, have an abundant milk supply, and donate their extra milk to the Milk Bank.

For this generous act they receive no payment or compensation, except the satisfaction that comes from knowing they have helped improve the health of a fragile baby.

Want to donate milk?

1. Complete a 10-15 minute phone screening.

2. Complete and return an informational packet.

3. Have a blood test done. (They pay.)

4. When they receive your paperwork and lab results, the Clinical Director calls you with your approval status.

Ready to get started with the screening process?Milk Bank Logo

Austin Mamas, contact Kara White at, 512.494.0800. or toll-free 1.877.813.MILK (6455).  Please tell her your name, phone number, best time to reach you, and your baby’s birth date.

Outside Austin Mamas, check out the Human Milk Banking Association of North America for information on your nearest milk bank.

Other cities currently with milk banks in the U.S.:  San Jose, Calif; Denver, Colo; Indianapolis, Indiana; Coralville, Iowa; Kalamazoo, Michigan; Newtonville, Mass; Raleigh, North Carolina; Columbus, Ohio; Portland, Oregon;  and Fort Worth, Texas.

Milk on mamas!

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4 Responses to “Mothers’ Milk Bank News & Information”

  1. B says:

    Milk banks, such a great idea. Wish we had one here. Keep up the great work mamas!!

  2. Thank you, thank you Monica from the bottom of our hearts! We so appreciate you sharing the Milk Bank’s story… and the news of our upcoming soiree. It’s a great opportunity for Austinites to come learn more about milk banking, becoming a milk donor, volunteering, or supporting our work in other ways.
    – Sarah Masterson, Communications & Volunteer Coordinator, Mothers’ Milk Bank at Austin

  3. Shannon says:

    Bravo to you and your town for meeting this need. I am a donor for a small up and coming milk bank organization here in Orlando, FL and I look at your grand opening with a little drool and lots of dreams for our own group. =)

    I stumbled upon your website through someone who wrote about your milk band through Mothering magazine. My hubby and I will be visiting Austin next week with two little ones (3 and 1) and I was wondering if you had any advice on any child-friendly (possibly AP friendly?) attractions/event/restaurants? Thanks so much!!

  4. This is so very cool. When my son Diego could not nurse for 6 months I pumped an entire deep freeze worth of extra milk (thinking hopefully I could quit pumping at some point and he could live off of the reserves).

    It was so bittersweet though when he finally was able to nurse again, because though I was thrilled that he could nurse, I didn’t know WHAT to do with all that milk. Unfortunately milk banks wouldn’t take it because they have their own containers and such for protocol, which totally makes sense. I gave some to friends who needed it, made some into smoothies for my older son, and even baked a little with it (don’t tell my friends). But in the end, I had to throw some of it away because it expired. It was tragic. I almost cried as I watched it go down the drain.

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