Conference 23 

Shifting Perspectives – Navigating the Future of Breastfeeding

The ABM are back for another amazing Annual Conference.

We are really excited to be able to offer a Hybrid event with the options of attending in person or online.

The event will be held and streamed from The Priory Rooms in Birmingham so you can join us to feel the community and experience the networking in person. If you can’t join us, then put your feet up with a cuppa and enjoy the online streamed event from the comfort of your own home (or the local coffee shop!) on the day, and for two weeks afterwards!

Date: Saturday 24th June 2023

Location: Online and The Priory Rooms Birmingham

With another amazing line up of speakers (soon to be announced) covering a wide range of interesting and informative topics we really hope that you will join us for what promises to be another great conference.


Conference Speakers

Speaker – Ernestine Gheyoh Ndzi

Dr Ernestine Gheyoh Ndzi is the Associate Dean for Law and Police Studies at York St John University. Her research interest lies in Company Law and Employment Law. Ernestine has in the past four years been researching on shared parental leave and breastfeeding. Ernestine is a member of the Board of Trustees for The Breastfeeding Network. She is currently working on the breastfeeding documentary titled “Breastfeeding: Not on the Agenda” to be launched on the 29th of June 2023.

Speaker – Hannah Cresswell

Hannah is a breastfeeding peer supporter volunteering with the NBH and at a Breastfeeding Network group in her village in Gloucestershire.  Prior to the birth of her eldest child, Hannah was a secondary school teacher. Alongside returning to paid employment for Anya, Hannah, volunteers in a number of national and international breastfeeding support roles and is an aspiring Lactation Consultant, passionate about making breastfeeding support available to all families.


Speaker – Shel Banks

Shel works part time in the NHS as an infant feeding lead and is working on co-developing the infant feeding strategy for Lancashire & South Cumbria Integrated Care System. In addition Shel is an IBCLC Infant Feeding Specialist and Clinical Director for the mobile app Anya app, working to support improved pregnancy, parenting and infant feeding outcomes for families everywhere.

As well as working for the NHS and Anya, Shel provides teaching, writing and other expertise to a number of national organisations, and has written and contributed to chapters in several books about infant feeding, as well as writing ‘Why Infant Formula Matters’, published in 2022 by Pinter & Martin, and has a small private practice supporting families locally and across the world via videocall. Shel has been involved in 3 Cochrane systematic reviews on various aspects of infantile colic, and the development of 3 NICE guidelines in the infant feeding arena.Shel is undertaking her PhD study on supporting parents of unsettled babies with colic, reflux and allergy.


Speaker – Dr Ilana Levene

Dr Ilana Levene is a NIHR Clinical Doctoral Fellow currently finishing her PhD at the National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit, University of Oxford. She is also a neonatal sub-specialty trainee at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford and co-chair of the Hospital Infant Feeding Network (, @HIFN12). She was on the working group of both BAPM (British Association of Perinatal Medicine) quality improvement toolkits on perinatal and sustainable maternal breastmilk for preterm infants, published in 2020 and 2022. She was a trustee of a local breastfeeding charity for seven years and has acted as a voluntary advisor to neonatal charity Bliss. She has two children and had wildly different breastfeeding experiences with both!



Speaker – Toni Harman

Toni Harman is a filmmaker, author, course creator and champion of the microbiome. Toni has produced and directed a number of internationally distributed documentary films including: 

MICROBIRTH – about the origins of the human microbiome
FREEDOM FOR BIRTH – about the struggle for women’s rights in childbirth
DOULA! – about the work of birth and postnatal doulas. 

Toni’s extensive research for MICROBIRTH led to her co-authoring the books THE MICROBIRTH EFFECT and YOUR BABY’s MICROBIOME. Toni offers CPD/CE accredited courses – which can be found at


Speaker – Catherine (Katie) Pereira-Kotze

Katie is a dietitian by training and has been working in the field of public health nutrition since 2005. Katie has a special interest in the protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding and optimal infant and young child nutrition. She recently completed her PhD in Public Health through the University of the Western Cape (South Africa), which focused on maternity protection for non-standard workers in low-and-middle-income countries. Katie has worked in government, research, and academia and most of her previous work was in South Africa and other LMIC. Katie relocated to the UK in 2020 and is currently a Senior Nutritionist at First Steps Nutrition Trust, where much of her work focuses on coordinating the Secretariat for the Baby Feeding Law Group UK, a coalition of 33 charities, organisations, health professional bodies and independent members who work together to protect infant, young child and maternal health by ending marketing practices which commercialise infant feeding, mislead consumers and threaten breastfeeding.


Speaker – Kathryn Stagg

Kathryn Stagg is an ABM breastfeeding counsellor and IBCLC. Mum to 4 boys including twins, she has been supporting families to breastfeed their babies for over 15 years. She is particularly interested in supporting multiple birth families to meet their breastfeeding goals. Kathryn set up Breastfeeding Twins and Triplets UK Facebook group back in 2015. It now boasts more than 7000 members. They are a UK charity offering 1:1 breastfeeding support to those who cannot access expert help, funding training mother supporters, and education health care professionals and breastfeeding supporters on the unique issues faced by multiple birth families. 

Kathryn is also Breastfeeding Counsellor Coordinator for the ABM East.


Social Media

We will be using our social media accounts to keep you updated about the conference, so please do follow us @AssocBFMothers or via the links below.

Our hashtag for the event is #ABMConf23

 ABM Twitter Link     ABM Facebook Link      ABM Instagram Line