OUR MISSION: Coordinating prenatal,
hospital/delivery, and postnatal lactation support.

Tamisha Bonvillain
(Burchard Hills)

Amanda Veeder
(Jo Daviess)

Annette Geilenfeldt

Kim Honan

Breastfeeding is normal and healthy for infants and mom.

  • Breastfeeding offers essential nutrients
  • Breastmilk is easy to digest
  • Breastmilk fights disease

What happens if breastfeeding doesn't happen "normally"?

New mothers and their families need to know where in the community they can turn to when breastfeeding assistance is needed. In Stephenson County, several individual breastfeeding support experts throughout FHN & SCHD are available to help breastfeeding families.

How we help breastfeeding families:

  • Breastfeeding Nook manned by Nurses from FHN Memorial Hospital, FHN Family Healthcare Clinics, and the Stephenson County Health Department at community events
  • Lactation consultations by one of five registered Lactation Consultants at FHN Family Healthcare Centers, FHN Birthing Center, and Stephenson County Health Department
  • Breastfeeding support by certified breastfeeding counselors through Stephenson County Health Department, Family Connects Program, and FHN Family Healthcare Centers
  • Referrals to FHN providers in Physical, Occupational, or Speech Therapy as needed for infant evaluation

We are individuals that understand the importance of supporting the mother/baby breastfeeding couple. Our group includes FHN and Stephenson County Health Department team members from several medical specialties, including:

  • Nurse Practitioners
  • Registered Lactation Consultants
  • Nursing WIC Dieticians
  • Certified Lactation Counselors
  • Family Connects Program Director

  • Physical Therapists
    • Optimize positioning for infants and mothers
    • Identify signs of infection or other developmental concerns potentially impacting feeding
    • Provide relaxation advice
  • Occupational Therapists
    • Address problems with initiation and continuation of breastfeeding, including latching
    • Promote mother self-care, including prevention of clogged ducts/mastitis and establishing routines to encourage social participation
    • Help establish habits and routines supportive of continued breastfeeding, including mother/infant sleep, safe sleep and nighttime breastfeeding positioning, and the transition back to work while breastfeeding
  • Speech Therapists
    • Evaluate infant swallow in order to introduce and optimize adequate feeding
    • Treat disordered swallowing/feeding by utilizing compensatory strategies, improving latch and suck/swallow reflex, and addressing tongue movement patterns
    • Educate families on anatomy and physiology of infant swallowing

Additional members with vested interested in supporting the breastfeeding mother and  baby couple are welcome. We meet on the fourth Tuesday of each month.
Please call 815-599-6244 for additional information.

FHN Resources

FHN Obstetrics Classes
Make sure to take advantage of our free prenatal, breastfeeding, and sibling classes.

Keep all of your child's medical information (and your info too!) at your fingertips with MyFHN. From health information, discharge instruction, and appointments to messaging your provider and refilling prescriptions. Instructions for signing up for MyFHN are available online.

Local Family Programs

Family Connects: Stephenson County offers at-home services for families who gave birth at FHN Memorial Hospital or SSM Health Monroe Clinic.

Programs such as the Family Enrichment Program in Stephenson and Jo Daviess County and Right Steps Program in Carroll County are available for parents with children ages birth to 3 years old.

Healthy Families Stephenson County offers services for parents under 30.

Educational Materials

Enjoy these handouts courtesy of the Stephenson County Health Department and Illinois Department of Human Services.

Your Baby Needs Your Milk, a breastfeeding guide from the IDHS

WIC (Women, Infants & Children) - services for those utilizing Illinois state insurance

Five Reasons to Keep Your Child Enrolled in WIC Until Age 5
Cinco Razones para Mantener a Su Hijo Inscrito en WIC Hasta los 5 Años

Healthy Families Illinois Doula Program, a guide to area doula services

Breastfeeding Resources

Breastfeeding Support Group
Bring your baby and join area moms for the FHN/SCHD Breastfeeding Support Group at the Freeport Public Library, 100 E. Douglas Street, at 2:00 p.m. on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month. Share knowledge, build a support system, and gain up-to-date breastfeeding information.

Breastfeeding help
La Lecha League and Kelly Mom can assist you with resources and breastfeeding help. La Leche League hold monthly meetings to provide mother-to-mother support. For questions, call Sarah 779-208-0176 or Mandy 815-621-3560.

Milk Banks
Mother’s Milk Bank of the Western Great Lakes and Human Milk 4 Human Babies - Illinois provide a space where families in need can connect with women who have milk to share or moms who want to donate milk.

Breast Pumps & Insurance
Before making a breast pump and bottle purchase, check to see if it is covered under your insurance. Contact Lehan's Medical Equipment for local assistance - stop in to 1780 Rosenstiel Dr, Freeport, or call 815-599-1840. You can also check out these websites: Edge Park Breastpumps, Byram Healthcare, Neb Medical Services and Aeroflow Breast Pumps.

Nursing Bras
Learn how to choose the right nursing bra for you at Ask Dr Sears or locate hard to find sizes at reasonable prices at Mother Wear, Just My Size, Bravado Designs and Q-T Intimates by La Leche League.

Product Safety
Safer Products allows families to check for safety complaints about a product before buying. Healthcare providers, families, and others can also report product-related injuries to the CPSC.

Facebook Groups
Northern Illinois Breastfeeding Task Force is a local group of people who support breastfeeding. La Leche League also has a breastfeeding support group. 815 Mommas is an 815-area forum to ask questions or advice on anything from the best baby thermometer to who would you recommend for a babysitter. You can also see local events, get in touch with other moms/dads, set up a play dates, and more.

Parent Apps
Track feedings, milk supply, sleep schedules, diaper changes, milestones, and more on apps like Glow Baby Growth Tracker and Milk Maid.

Breastfeeding Rights
For information about the federal and Illinois laws that protect a mother and child's rights to breastfeed, visit Illinois State Breastfeeding Task Force and Illinois Department of Human Services.

The American Academy of Pediatrics dedicates their efforts and resources to the health, safety and well-being of children. A wealth of general information can be found at healthychildren.org. Their Breastfeeding Policy Statement provides your pediatrician with the information to support you and your baby. Additional information and statistics about breastfeeding in America can be found at cdc.gov/breastfeeding.