Place Category: Communities
- Website & Social
- Social Impact Declaration
- Social Impact Statements
Real Baby Milk is a not-for-profit company which has lots to offer you. Whether you are looking for information about how to care for your baby, have been given one of our Essential Guides or you are looking to buy something from our shop, its all here! Please let us know what you think of any of our services – we are always keen to hear your thoughts.
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Social Impact Statements
The Social Enterprise Mark criteria includes a requirement that the applicant can demonstrate that social and/or environmental objectives are being achieved.
In support of this, new applicants and renewing Mark holders are asked to respond to a set of social impact questions, which are designed to help them think about the social impact they create, and to articulate this clearly and succinctly.
Updated July 2019
1) What social differences and changes have you aimed to create (or supported)?
We have been working to support mums and families to embed responsive feeding (including breastfeeding/giving breastmilk) and caring for their babies with information and about how this supports babies’ brain development, secure relationships and attachment further supporting good mental health.
The groups we support work across rural and urban communities and help to lessen social isolation in those communities at a time when new parents can be vulnerable.
2) What actions have you taken to address the above social aims?
We provide specialist supervision and support for around 100 volunteers across Cornwall and training for community Breastfeeding Peer Support Volunteers and Hospital-based Breastfeeding Peer Support Volunteers each year.
We publish and print Area-specific and generic ‘Essential Guides to Feeding & caring for your baby’ and market DVD and film clip resources used in antenatal & postnatal parent education. The information supports Unicef Baby Friendly outcomes.
3) What has changed and what benefits have been realised as a result of your actions?
Parents within areas commissioning our Essential Guides benefit from consistent information, which is supported by evidence-based research. Our DVDs, film clips and other resources further support responsive parenting with the benefits for babies and families.
In Cornwall, our communities benefit from an extensive community group with social media network helping to reduce social isolation and feelings of loneliness.
Our Essential Guides also help upskill and act as updates for health and children’s services professionals working with parents.
We are a nationally known and respected organisation within our field and add credibility and assurance to our County as part of this reputation – e.g. approached to be part of national academic trial and social marketing group.
4) How do you and other people know your aims are being achieved? Or how will you know?
We have recently commissioned a Social Return on Investment Report on our Essential Guide.
We keep channels open with our stakeholders using a combination of regular meetings, social media and collaborative projects. We measure our reach and outcomes within target groups and report to commissioners and other interested parties.
The below questions are not mandatory, but Mark holders are encouraged to answer them where possible, to provide a fuller account of their social outcomes and the social value they create.
5) How many people have benefitted from your actions?
We have produced approximately 38,000 Bespoke Guides for various NHS Trusts and Children’s Services and 30,000 Generic Essential Guides reaching 68,000 families with evidence-based information helping to support responsive feeding & parenting.
In Cornwall, and the wider South West we have provided accredited training for approx. 70 volunteer peer supporters and a further 12 Hospital-based volunteer peer supporters and provided specialist support and supervision for around 100 peer supporters across 22 community settings each year.
The volunteers we support are involved in antenatal sessions working with other health and children’s services professionals.
We have supported our local Neonatal Unit with posters and resources to enable them to work towards Unicef Baby Friendly accreditation reaching parents whose babies are admitted onto the unit (around 500/year).
6) What examples can you provide of a typical service user experience, that helps illustrate the benefits they have experienced as a result of your actions?
“Our services offer a refuge and safe place for mums that want to breastfeed their babies to talk about any problems or successes they are having. If there are issues with feeding we support that mother to continue breastfeeding by helping to solve the issues either ourselves or by referring to professionals for advice. We are in the community and easy to access, free, friendly, trained peers that have all breastfed babies. We are there to support through the early months and later years of each mothers breastfeeding journey. And we all end up friends.
“Without our peer support I probably would have had a downward spiral in mental health after feeling like I failed my baby by not being able to feed her solely. The group became my favourite place to go and not be advised or judged”
Mum Age 36, Camborne, first baby. Mum worked in childcare, Dad a mechanic.
“I had patchy support in hospital with some good support from some members of staff but knowing someone who was a breastfeeding peer supporter made a difference – I’m not sure if I would have continued if I hadn’t known that person”
“I had read the Essential Guide (to feeding & caring for your baby) but I don’t think my partner had – he’s dyslexic so reading isn’t really his thing... When T had weight gain problems I didn't understand it, my Midwife just said to come back in 2 days time….there was no plan I felt like such a failure I spent all day crying.”
The above are examples of the experiences of both volunteer peer supporters and 2 mums who have benefited directly from the support provided by services and resources we provide.
7) What additional social benefits have you been able to deliver within your core services that distinguish you from other “for shareholder profit” providers?
‘Extra to contract’ items contribute to widening the appeal of information given to parents and families and improving the level of care – for example the ‘beanie hats’ knitted by some of our volunteers, has helped to identify mums and babies in a very visible way who are in need of extra support with feeding thus improving their care and improving outcomes for those mums and babies. The timely identification and support of these higher risk mums and babies will also shorten stays on the post-natal ward and contribute to fewer re-admissions for feeding problems.
8) What other social benefits have you contributed that go beyond your core delivery activities (ones that are completely unrelated to your main services)?
Please see previous answer. In addition, we have developed an ‘Easy Read’ version of our Essential Guide to feeding & caring for your baby of which 50 copies were donated to Cornwall’s Special Parenting Service for use with their client group. A further 20 copies were given for use by young parents via Wild.
In monetary terms this equates to approximately £85. There was a further investment of staff and design time which equates to approximately a further £340 across the whole development of this product.