Mum’s amazing act after tragedy
YANA Williams sat with her dead premature daughter for days desperately trying to produce milk for her twin Kyzan.
The NSW mum, 32, had gone into early labour after Halo passed away in the womb.
Mrs Williams knew her daughter was never going to make it because of a heart defect, but believes Halo was "hanging on" to make sure her brother had the best start to his life.
Despite the trauma of losing Halo and keeping her in a "cuddle cot" next to the family for three days to say goodbye, Mrs Williams also wanted to make sure Kyzan got the best start.
She wasn't producing milk and having breastfed her three older children, she was determined to make it happen.
For four days Mrs Williams painstakingly syringed colostrum out of her breast every half-hour so it could be fed "drop by drop" to Kyzan via his feeding tube.
By the fifth day her milk finally came, but at levels high enough to feed four babies.
Now that milk - 12 litres in excess - has gone to save premature babies around the country who haven't been able to have their own mothers' milk.
"I really wanted to breastfeed but because he wasn't sucking I spent hours and hours expressing just to get my milk in and once it was in, it was in, I just had so much milk," Mrs Williams said.
"I was told when I first had him he really needed to start taking colostrum so droplet by droplet I sat there every half-an-hour getting 5ml out because I really wanted to persevere."
Because feeding can be exhausting for a premature baby, they can only feed in small amounts so they don't exert too many calories.
Mrs Williams said her nipples were extremely painful for days.
Husband James helped with using the syringe to get the colostrum to the feeding tube and Kyzan was fed that way until he was a week old.
"It really didn't hit me, through all the pain, I got through it, I was determined to push through," Mrs Williams said.
"We went through a pretty traumatic time losing Halo, with the stress I was going through, I was just so determined to give him the best. I stuck with it and it paid off. It was really hard."
With studies showing premature babies being fed breast milk reduces necrotising enterocolitis, a condition where a portion of the bowel dies, Mrs Williams said she was passionate about feeding with human milk.
Earlier this year an Australian breastfeeding expert said some health practitioners were scaring new mums with dated information that breast milk can cause decay, with some warning to brush the tiny tots' gums.
"With my three other boys I was so well educated and knew the benefits of breast milk," Mrs Williams said.
"So many mothers don't know they can donate and I think it will be a good thing to get out there so they can. They're screaming for donor milk.
"It's too good to waste so I really wanted it to go to good use."
Mrs Williams donated half of her 12 litres of breastmilk when she took some emergency bottles on a trip to Melbourne and found a dad through the Human Milk for Human Babies Facebook group.
She then arranged for the other half to go to the Mothers' Milk Bank Charity where she had to get up early at her Griffith home to make sure it could get on a flight via Sydney to the Gold Coast to be distributed from there.
Some women have revealed they made thousands by selling their breast milk to men, on top of donating it to mothers who were having trouble breastfeeding.
The Mothers' Milk Bank provides screened and pasteurised donor milk to families in need while the human group is a global network where people come together on social to share their own supplies.
The Mothers' group said donors like Mrs Williams were amazing because babies were better off because of them.