‘A Dad’s guide to breastfeeding’: Social Marketing Project Report
Summary of findings
In general, participants were very positive about breastfeeding. They reported being ‘in favour’, ‘believing in it’, being ‘all for it’ and that breastfeeding was ‘a good thing’.
Fathers saw their role as supporting their partner to breastfeed and cited practical ways that they could do this, acknowledging that breastfeeding can be very time consuming. These included helping their partner find a comfortable breastfeeding position, enhancing the home environment, undertaking household tasks such as cooking and housework, and caring for the baby between feeds.
- Assessing fathers’ knowledge of infant feeding;
- Gathering information on couples’ feeding intentions before birth and practice when baby born;
- Evaluating fathers’ confidence in supporting partners’ breastfeeding;
- The extent and quality of parents’ communication re. breastfeeding;
- An assessment of the pack’s content, format, design and tone;
- Parents’ perception of the impact of the pack on initiation and duration of breastfeeding.
In 2007, ten learning demonstration sites were set up by the National Social Marketing Centre with funding from the Department of Health. The aim of which was to help local areas apply and integrate social marketing into their programmes and strategies, whilst helping to develop a robust evidence base for social marketing. The learning demonstration sites are also a key component of the Department of Health’s ‘Ambitions for Health’ strategic framework to build capacity and skills in applying social marketing principles to health interventions.
The learning demonstration sites were based in Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) and local authorities across the country and addressed a wide range of health issues.
The ‘A Dad’s guide to breastfeeding’ pilot project in Brighton was one of the demonstration sites selected for the programme, which aimed to support fathers in their role in the breastfeeding process.
The ‘A Dad’s guide to breastfeeding’ social marketing pilot project was one of ten learning demonstration sites, set up by the National Social Marketing Centre with funding from DH, to build capacity and skills in applying social marketing principles to health interventions. This pilot aimed to provide fathers with targeted information about breastfeeding to support the fathers’ role in breastfeeding.
Men and women who were either expecting a baby or who had recently had a baby
20 and under to above the age of 45
Interviews were carried out with 18 men and women who were either expecting a baby or who had recently had a baby. Interviews focused on knowledge of feeding babies, confidence in supporting partners’ breastfeeding, fathers’ role in breastfeeding, their assessment of the pack, and their perception of its impact on initiation and duration of breastfeeding.
Data collection methodology
18 men and women
Brighton, East Sussex