To become an ABA breastfeeding counsellor or educator, you need to complete our volunteer traineeship.
Frequently asked questions about volunteering
We sponsor your training and invest considerable resources to help you complete your volunteer traineeship. In return, we expect you to commit to volunteering with ABA for at least two years part-time after you complete your course.
Once appointed as a breastfeeding counsellor or educator, you agree to:
- remain a financial member of ABA
- remain active in the Association for at least 2 years after being appointed
- Breastfeeding counsellors agree to participate at least 8 hours each month on the National Breastfeeding Helpline roster
- Breastfeeding educators agree to participate at least 8 hours each month on the LiveChat roster alongside selected education events.
Questions to think about:
- How will my role in ABA fit in with other priorities in my life?
- Do I have work or other commitments which are expected to increase?
- How will my family feel about the amount of my time I will be committing?
As a volunteer trainee, you learn on-the-job, including a work placement of 150 hours (minimum) of volunteering with ABA; usually at local group level. If there is no active local group in your area, there are other options for participation. You will be required to complete guided Reflective Journals for your volunteer activities with ABA as part of your course assessment.
During your training you agree to:
- remain a financial member of the Association
- participate in training activities, e.g. meetings, workshops, online study groups
- complete 150 hours (minimum) of volunteering.
You will undertake a Practicum (supported practical work) before being appointed as a breastfeeding counsellor or educator.
Every member of ABA is allocated to a group based on their postcode. Some members live too far from where their group meets to be able to travel often to attend activities. Some members live remotely and their group provides virtual support. From time to time some groups are less active and may not be able to run activities for their members.
All parts of the course (volunteering and training) are able to be completed even if you don't live near a group. Attending a local group is an easy way to pick up volunteer hours but there are online activities you can join and plenty of other ways to volunteer - we have a whole list. You can also run social activities for mums in your local community once you are a little way into your training and feel confident.
When you become an ABA member, your group name will be visible on your My ABA page. Before that you can find your nearest group by using the map function (at the top of the page).
If you live remotely and your postcode doesn't bring up a result, try searching for the nearest larger centre. Alternatively you can contact the course coordinator - firstname.lastname@example.org
Our course is designed to train our volunteers in all aspects of the Association's work, not just providing lactation support. Each unit has ABA policies and procedures embedded into it and having a practical understanding of these is essential before being appointed to our volunteer team.
In addition, government funding of the National Breastfeeding Helpline requires that our volunteers hold the Certificate IV in Breastfeeding Education. ABA offers Recognition of Prior Learning for whole units.