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Professional and short courses

Treasure Chest Breastfeeding Peer Supporters

Whether or not you have personal experience of breastfeeding, this course will help you build the confidence and knowledge needed to be an effective advocate and peer supporter of breastfeeding.

This short course will provide you with a working knowledge of breastfeeding peer support, and can be applied to breastfeeding support groups and counsellors both online and in person. The course is open to anyone who is supportive of breastfeeding, with strands for those who have breastfed themselves and wish to volunteer with Treasure Chest, and those who wish to be a breastfeeding advocate in their workplace or community.

York campus

  • Course leader – Caroline Bolton and Adrienne Symonds
  • Duration – 12 weeks, with a 2 hour session every week
  • Dates and times

    Start date: 30 September 2022

    Time: Fridays 9.30am to 11.30am

Course Fees

£222 per person

Course information

The course will take place in 2 hour sessions over 12 weeks. Sessions will be a mixture of group sessions, lectures, seminars, and focused study groups. It will conclude with a moderated practical examination. In addition to the 2 hours of class learning, please account for 2 hours of self study in preparation for each weekly session.

The course will be split into 2 pathways:

  • one for parents that have breastfed
  • one for parents or non-parents that have not had that experience.

This will give you the opportunity to build on the practical knowledge you may have already gained through life experiences, and learn from the experiences of others. Those that have breastfed will be able to gain a Peer Supporter certificate, while those who have not can gain a Breastfeeding Advocate certificate, as well as becoming a friend of Treasure Chest.

Each week new topics will be explored, covering the biochemical, political and socioeconomic factors which impact upon families' choices and ability to reach their goals. Developing active listening and communication skills, and understanding the remit and boundaries of your role, are an essential element of the course.

Once the course is completed there is ongoing supervision and update sessions to ensure you are supported as a volunteer.

Course leader biographies

Caroline Bolton

Caroline has been training Peer Supporters for 15 years and is passionate about sharing information to help families reach their personal feeding goals. She is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) and is also a manager of the National Breastfeeding Helpline, and a trustee and training manager of the Association of Breastfeeding Mothers.

Adrienne Symonds

Adrienne is a public health nutritionist and lactation consultant (IBCLC) specialising in maternal and infant nutrition. Her key interests include birth, breastfeeding and mental health outcomes for the family unit.

How to apply

To book your place, please email

Continuing Professional Development at York St John University

Boost skills, knowledge and confidence with a professional or short course from York St John University.  We offer professional learning and development opportunities for teams and individuals, from single sessions to longer courses.

To talk to us about your training and development needs, please email

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