A Donegal researcher has issued a call for local participants to share their experiences for a new study on infant feeding.

Anna (Foy) McPherson is originally from Inver in Co Donegal and currently living in Brisbane, Australia. She is carrying out a new study as she looks at improving the infant feeding experiences of Donegal women.

Anna said: “I was born and raised in Donegal, so my goal is to ensure that the resource I create is designed for people from Donegal by people from Donegal. To do this, I need to hear from Donegal women, their partners (if applicable), grandparents and health professionals in Donegal.”

“The World Health Organization (WHO) states that breastfeeding is the preferred method of infant feeding. However, my research has found breastfeeding rates in Ireland are the lowest in the world and breastfeeding rates in Donegal are the lowest in Ireland.

“My study is concerned with the infant feeding experiences of women in Donegal, my home county!  I know we always say we are “the forgotten county”, but this will be your chance to get involved and do something to improve the long-term health of Donegal people, so I hope you will support me!”

Participants can contribute to the study by taking part in one online workshop.

Anna would love to hear from you if you fit any of the four categories below, or you know someone who does:

  1. The mother of a child born in Co. Donegal in the past two years. 
  2. The partner of a woman who has given birth to a child in Co. Donegal in the past two years.
  3. The grandparent of a child born in Co. Donegal in the last two years.  
  4. A health care professional involved in providing maternal care to mothers in Donegal.

“Your lived experiences of formula feeding and breastfeeding in Donegal are so important and understanding this issue from different perspectives, i.e. mothers, partners, grandparents and health professionals is crucial.

“If we want to create change, you need to tell me what works, what needs to change and your suggestions on how to improve the infant feeding experiences of women in Co. Donegal. My approach to tackling this issue is to create a digital intervention that is designed by people from Donegal, for people from Donegal.

“Participation in this research will involve being part of an online workshop which will take approximately 60- 90 minutes. So, you can share your opinions from the comfort of your own home!”

Please email anna.mcpherson@griffithuni.edu.au if you want to have your say.