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Elisabeth Anderson Sierra is a hyperlactation syndrome mom. Hyperlactation is a condition where a mother is producing way too much milk than needed by her baby.
Elisabeth who is from Oregon, is a mum with 2 kids. She found that she has an oversupply of milk and up to now she has donated 600 gallons of milk to help babies in need. She has been donating for 2.5 years already.
That is amazing! Wonder how she can produce so much milk?
Half of them are donated to the Tiny Treasures Milk Bank and the other half to local moms. The breast milk donated to the milk bank goes to help micro preemies whose survival depends on breast milk fortifier.
Micro preemies are babies who are born before 26 weeks gestation. In comparison, a baby born between 27 and 34 weeks is considered premature. Micro preemies babies generally weigh less than 800g. The average weight of a normal baby reaching full term of 37 to 40 weeks, is 3.5kg.
According to Elisabeth, “I’m now 6 months postpartum with my second daughter and I’m pumping an average of 225 oz a day on top of breastfeeding my baby.
Everyday she breast pumps 5 – 10 hours a day to produce the milk for donation. So far, she has burned through 8 medela pumps and I’ve invested in two Symphony pumps as well as Spectra and PJs comfort.”
Elisabeth has 3 freezers which she uses to frozen the milk and storage before it is donated or shipped to the milk bank.
There are quite a number of cost involved – plastic bags, pump parts, water, distilled water, de-scaling powder, soap, bottle brushes, pump part brushes, electricity, sterilizers and vinegar.
She spend quite a lot of time doing this. Instead of spending quality time with her children, she has to spend time – washing, sterilizing, setup, actual breast pumping, pump breakdown, bagging milk, weighing milk, labeling, freezing, organizing and storing the milk.
She does not mind as she love what she is doing.
Amazing! Great work, Elisabeth.
Donating to a milk bank has helped offset some costs as the milk bank provide the bags and pays her $1 per oz of qualified milk. However, 50% of the that goes to taxes.