Meet Jessica Archer, Breastfeeding Peer Counselor in WIC

Jessica Archer, a lifelong resident of Lebanon, joined YCCAC’s WIC program in September. She is the Breastfeeding Peer Counselor in our Biddeford office, and provides administrative assistance at the WIC clinic in Sanford. Jessica’s extended family—she has two sons, Jaxson, four and a half, and Eben, eighteen months—occupies houses set one next to the other. “We live on the same road as the rest of our families,” Jessica said “My mom lives next door to us, and my boyfriend’s parents are on the other side. If we’re not visiting one family, we’re visiting the other.” Prior to coming to YCCAC, Jessica worked as a medical assistant for a private practice in Dover, New Hampshire. She enjoys working with moms and believes that breastfeeding support plays a vital role for many women in our community. “More often than not, moms want to try to breastfeed,” Jessica said. “We support those who are able to breastfeed, but we also provide support to moms who can’t or choose not to.” Jessica said that she’s found “the relationship between a mom and child when breastfeeding is really important, and two sided—it’s mutual. There’s a bond that’s created in the act of breastfeeding.” But she notes also that breastfeeding is not always to one’s liking. “If there’s a mom who doesn’t want to breastfeed, there’s no pressure for her to do so. Some moms find that same bond just fine with bottle feeding.” Jessica and her family are “homebodies.” She said that the woods are all around her, and she enjoys “being outdoors, 4-wheeling, snowshoeing . . . the kind of activities most Mainer’s like to do.” Her youngest son, Eben, is “obsessed with tractors and horses. He’s my farm-boy.” In addition to her work at the WIC offices in Sanford and Biddeford, and attending a weekly breastfeeding support group at Southern Maine Health Care in Biddeford, Jessica is taking classes in public health and health administration. “Being a part of WIC has made me more interested in public health. And I think that the more I learn, the better I’ll be able to help people in our community.” We’re glad you chose YCCAC to bring your passion and your talents.

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