LLL Today #2 – Becoming an LLL Leader

La Leche League (LLL) is a mother-to-mother, peer-to-peer breastfeeding support organization. All LLL Leaders are volunteers who have breastfeed a child for a year or more. This experience of breastfeeding into toddlerhood gives Leaders the experience to support others in their breastfeeding journeys.

Has LLL helped you in your breastfeeding, nursing or chestfeeding journey?
Would you like to help other mothers successfully breastfeed?
Does “mothering through breastfeeding” describe how you nurtured your baby?
Do you value the breastfeeding relationship?

If you answered, YES, YES, YES, YES, then consider becoming a La Leche League Leader.

As an LLL Leader, you would

  • support breastfeeding mothers in group settings or one-to-one.
  • help nursing parents inperson or virtually.
  • provide information to anyone who is pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • keep uptodate on breastfeeding management.
  • represent an international breastfeeding organization in your community or country.
  • have the support of a network of Leaders around the world.

Many LLL Leaders also

  • work with healthcare professionals in their communities to support breastfeeding families.
  • offer prenatal breastfeeding classes.
  • write articles for LLL publications.
  • prepare sessions for LLL conferences.
  • translate breastfeeding or chestfeeding information into other languages.

To apply to become an LLL Leader, you need to meet the LLLI Prerequisites for Applying for LLL Leadership. (See below.) If you are not sure you meet these requirements, please talk with an LLL Leader in your community or country. You will also find information on the LLLI website “Become a Leader” pages:

  • Become a Leader – This page includes a Leader Inquiry Form that you can fill out. A member of the Leader Accreditation Department will contact you and refer you to a local representative of the department.
  • Steps to Accreditation – This page has six short videos explaining the work you would need to do in preparation for accreditation as an LLL Leader.
  • FAQs – Thinking About LLL Leadership – This page answers many questions you may have about LLL leadership
LLLI Prerequisites for Applying for LLL Leadership
PSR Applying for Leadership 

Individuals refer to breastfeeding in different ways, such as suckling, nursing or chestfeeding. For this policy, LLLI defines all of these terms as referring to feeding a child directly from the breast.
Experience with breastfeeding and nurturing through breastfeeding, plus the personal experience with La Leche League via in-person or virtual Group meetings and website resources, give an Applicant a strong basis for helping others as a Leader.

Personal Experience

A potential Applicant:

  • has breastfed, nursed, chestfed or suckled a child for 12 months or more,
  • has introduced complementary foods when baby showed signs of readiness, around the middle of the first year for the healthy full-term baby, and
  • has chosen attentive breastfeeding as the way to provide touch, comfort, warmth, protection, security, and responsiveness, as well as nourishment.

Special consideration is given to someone whose personal breastfeeding experience is outside the usual course of breastfeeding as described in The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, due to medical, physiological, or anatomical issues impacting either partner in the breastfeeding dyad.

Organizational Experience

A potential Applicant:

  • is a member of LLL or contributes as appropriate for the entity in which the application is being submitted,
  • supports LLL Vision, Mission and Philosophy,
  • when possible, has attended at least four LLL meetings in person or online,
  • demonstrates a clear understanding that leadership is volunteer work,
  • has knowledge of the information contained in the most recent edition of The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, if available in an accessible language and format,
  • is willing to create time to fulfill the basic responsibilities of leadership and/or provide other service to LLL, as described in the LLL Policies and Standing Rules,
  • is willing to complete the application work, and
  • has a recommendation from an LLL Leader.
Personal Skills

A potential Applicant:

  • has communication skills in the potential Applicant’s preferred language necessary to begin the application and preparation for accreditation,
  • demonstrates an accepting and respectful attitude toward others,
  • provides information and support without judgment, and
  •  is willing to develop further communication skills as needed to fulfill the responsibilities of leadership.

Linda Wieser

Linda Wieser lives in a rural part of Nova Scotia, Canada with her husband Jim. Their house is on a large bay (on the Atlantic Ocean) with many islands. In the back is an extensive vegetable garden. Linda and Jim have two grown daughters and four grandchildren. Linda has been an LLL Leader since 1984. She worked for many years in the Professional Liaison Department before joining the Leader Accreditation Department in 2008. Linda is currently the LLLI Director of the Leader Accreditation Department.